A green clean power plant can be a huge source of jobs and a powerful source of renewable energy.
And a recent announcement by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government has put Canada on track to reach its 2020 targets for solar power, wind and biofuels by 2030.
But for some communities, it is a big job and the economic opportunity that comes with building it.
“We’ve got the opportunity to be very, very large contributors to a number of important things, which will help build a lot of jobs,” said Scott Clark, a senior research fellow at the University of Guelph’s Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development.
“That’s going to be a challenge in this province and a challenge for other provinces in Canada.”
The federal government announced the new targets, which are in line with what the Harper government promised back in 2011, in its first budget.
But it also made some bold promises that were controversial, including cutting the amount of money that can go to communities to get projects built.
The government promised to invest $1 billion a year into green clean projects, but only a fraction of that will come from government spending, according to a study published by the U of Guillou earlier this month.
It also said it would fund projects in rural areas that are less developed.
In Ontario, for example, the government says it would be spending $1.2 billion a years on green clean jobs, but there are no detailed figures for communities that aren’t part of the provincial carbon levy.
The study says communities would also benefit from green clean infrastructure, but that’s a little less clear.
“In Ontario we don’t have any clear picture of how that is going to play out, how the money would be allocated to different areas, how much would be spent on those,” said Dr. Mark Smith, a professor at the Faculty of Public Health at the UofG.
“There is no clear picture.”
Clark is looking at how green clean work would play out in Canada.
He says Ontario is looking to invest in green clean plants to create jobs.
But that hasn’t been happening.
Ontario has about one million green clean workers, but the province’s Ministry of the Environment says that figure has dropped to about 1,200.
That means there’s been a huge decline in the number of green clean employees.
“The number of jobs that are actually being created are quite low,” said Clark.
“It’s been almost entirely a one-off, a job that’s gone to the scrap pile, or they’ve just been laid off.”
That means the number and type of jobs in Ontario are also changing.
There’s a big drop in the total number of workers at green clean facilities in the province.
Clark says Ontario could easily see up to half of the green clean workforce disappear.
And while the provincial government says that will happen through 2020, Clark says that is still not likely.
“For a province that’s very reliant on green energy, that’s not a realistic timeline.
It’s a lot more than a year from now,” said Smith.
“So, you know, it’s not realistic.
It could be much earlier than that.”
The U of G study also looked at how much it would cost to build green clean clean jobs in rural Ontario.
Clark’s research suggests that a typical green clean job would cost around $20,000 to build, which is less than half the cost of a conventional job.
But he says that number is misleading.
He notes that the amount Ontario spends on green green clean works isn’t as large as the amount it spends on traditional jobs, like truck drivers, who are typically hired at a much higher wage.
And that’s because there are many more jobs available in green green work than in traditional jobs.
The province says it is spending $40 million a year to train and support more than 800,000 people in green work.
But the number who actually get jobs is much smaller.
The Green Clean Technology Development Fund, the federal government’s green energy investment program, says it spends about $1 million a day in the form of grants and loans to help green clean companies hire people.
The program says that the vast majority of green energy jobs are temporary.
“Most of the jobs are permanent,” said John Prentice, the director of research at the Canadian Centre for Green Technologies, an advocacy group.
“They’re temporary because of lack of training, because there’s not the capacity to build the plant.”
But for communities like the one Clark lives in, that means there isn’t enough work.
“I think the people that live in my community don’t want to be displaced,” he said.
“But they’re also worried about the jobs.
And so I don’t think they’re going to accept that.”
Clark said it’s a bit hard to say how much work will be lost if the number goes down, but he believes that more green clean plant jobs will be created.
“As the industry continues to grow, it will be increasingly difficult for