Government of New Brunswick

Description and Background
The Province of New Brunswick will expand the network of smart grid stakeholders and partnerships and work with existing and new smart grid pilot projects.

The concept of a smart grid is to add monitoring, analysis, control, and communication capabilities to an electrical distribution system in order to maximize efficiency and reduce consumption. The global smart grid market is now defining a shared vision and a path forward with stakeholders of the future electric power system. There is an increasing need for the sharing of progress and pilot project outcomes among stakeholders, and for collaboration on both research and deployments.

An expanded network of smart grid stakeholders includes the Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development and other government departments, NB Power and municipal electric utilities, private sector technology firms, technology sector organizations, environmental groups, and postsecondary educational institutions. This network will continue to collaborate and build partnerships with neighbouring jurisdictions.

Existing pilot projects, such as the NB Power-led PowerShift Atlantic initiative, as well as new ones, will drive development and implementation of smart grid and energy efficiency technologies into homes and businesses. Smart grid innovation will enable residential and business consumers to better manage energy consumption and allow our energy dependent business sectors to be more competitive.

The success of the smart grid initiatives will be measured in ratepayer benefits and economic activity in the province’s technology sector.

PowerShift Atlantic smart grid pilot project
PowerShift Atlantic is a demonstration project focused on findingmore effectiveways of integratingwind energy into the electricity systemin theMaritime Provinces. It uses pilot programs with residential and commercial customers and is one of 19 Canada-wide projects supported by Natural Resources Canada’s Clean Energy Fund.

Key Objectives Served by this Action
Low and Stable Energy Prices
– Smart grid innovation creates efficiencies throughout the entire electrical system. New technologies contribute to better demand response and load control, allowing utilities to lower costs by shifting loads to less expensive generation during peak demand. These technologies also assist ratepayers to adjust consumption and usage patterns to save costs.

Reliability of the Electrical System – Technologies such as embedded sensors and automated controls help utilities better anticipate, detect and respond to system problems. In many cases, these technologies are self-healing and can automatically avoid or mitigate power outages, power quality problems and service disruptions, thereby providing ratepayers with a more reliable electrical system.

Environmental Responsibility – Many renewable energy generation resources, such as wind generation, are intermittent in nature. Smart grid technologies enable power systems to better predict availability of these sources and to utilize them in an optimal and cost efficient manner.

Smart grid will help us achieve our environmental goals through the enhanced integration of variable renewable energy resources.