The life-sustaining value of energy and its transmission are part of Canada’s DNA and we move energy in every possible way – powerlines, pipelines, ships, trains, trucks, even planes.
Canada’s extensive network of pipelines extends more than 840,000 kilometres across the country and carries energy products like natural gas, oil, propane, jet fuel and hydrogen across the continent. Canada is also a leader in the field of high voltage direct current (HVDC) electricity transmission, which permits the economic transmission of electricity over long distances, enabling remote generating facilities to link to end-users. Natural Resources Canada estimates there are over 430,000 kilometres of high voltage transmission lines across Canada and 35 interconnections that cross the Canada-US border.
As the world transitions to a lower-carbon energy future, all sources of energy transportation will continue to play a critical role in delivering Canadian energy to global markets.
Transportation is a critical feature of Canada’s energy system. In many cases energy sources are located far from end-use markets. The ability to move energy from producer to consumer in a way that is efficient, cost-effective, safe, and reliable with minimal environmental impact is a constant challenge. Canada’s future is shaped by the continued success and innovation of these principles.
Existing pipeline networks can transport alternative gases and liquids, including hydrogen, renewable natural gas, carbon dioxide as well as liquefied natural gas.
Additionally, Canada’s electricity infrastructure will support the growing commercial potential of new sources, such as wind and solar.
And Canada has always been a leader in energy transportation. The first 735-kilovolt voltage line was invented by a young Hydro-Québec engineer named Jean-Jacques Archambault and approved in 1962. Today 735 kV transmission lines are used around the world. This innovation and opportunity continue today.
Canada’s energy transportation industry has been adopting world-leading ESG standards for decades through well-established sustainability planning and corporate social responsibility programs.
Canada’s federal and provincial regulators enforce some of the strictest safety and environmental standards in the world. The transportation industry has been making investments in new technologies and practices to reduce its environmental footprint and reduce or eliminate the risk of spills.
Canadian pipeline and powerline companies work tirelessly to create lasting relationships based on mutual benefit with their employees, Indigenous peoples, and neighbouring communities. Industry members are continually learning how to improve the wider acceptability of their operations. A company’s ability to respect the social acceptability expected of it, has become an element in how a firm’s performance is evaluated.