Energy & Sustainability Framework

City Council voted unanimously for Regina to join the growing number of municipalities around the world and commit to becoming a 100 per cent renewable city by 2050.

The City’s goal is to achieve net zero carbon emissions and sourcing net zero energy from renewable sources by 2050. The primary focus is on climate change mitigation through a three-pronged approach:

  1. Reduce energy consumption
  2. Improve energy usage/efficiency
  3. Switch to renewable or low carbon energy sources

The Energy & Sustainability Framework will outline the guiding principles, community and municipal-wide action plans, timelines and targets necessary to achieve this goal, focusing on the

City Council voted unanimously for Regina to join the growing number of municipalities around the world and commit to becoming a 100 per cent renewable city by 2050.

The City’s goal is to achieve net zero carbon emissions and sourcing net zero energy from renewable sources by 2050. The primary focus is on climate change mitigation through a three-pronged approach:

  1. Reduce energy consumption
  2. Improve energy usage/efficiency
  3. Switch to renewable or low carbon energy sources

The Energy & Sustainability Framework will outline the guiding principles, community and municipal-wide action plans, timelines and targets necessary to achieve this goal, focusing on the community’s economic, social and environmental health collectively. City Administration have committed to providing this Framework for City Council’s consideration by end of 2021.

Community engagement is a very important part of developing the Framework. The City is committed to being informed by impacted stakeholders and the community at large to develop policies and action plans, and to ensuring the Framework builds on work that is already being done throughout Regina. This will include initiatives and methodology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero and create greater reliance on renewable sources of energy.

A key component of the City’s public engagement is the creation of a Community Advisory Group. The Group will represent multiple sectors within Regina and give input on the guiding policy principles of the framework as well as feedback on analysis, alternatives and proposed actions. It will be made up of representatives from non-profit organizations, business, industry and community groups.

The City has contracted Sustainability Solutions Group to assist in creation of the Framework, which involves completing an energy use and emissions inventory, establishing energy and emissions reduction targets, and producing scenarios that model policy choices and actions from now until 2050. There will be opportunity for public feedback on this work. Read the NewsFeed below for updates as work continues.

  • Regina's 7 Big Moves

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    The City of Regina has committed to becoming a 100 per cent renewable energy city by 2050. Achieving this goal requires a three-pronged approach:

    1. Reducing energy consumption
    2. Improving energy usage and efficiency
    3. Switching to renewable or low carbon energy sources

    Through analysis of Regina’s current community greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the targets necessary to achieve net-zero, consultant Sustainability Solutions Group has identified the seven ‘Big Moves’ that will make Regina renewable by 2050. View SSG's presentation at the October 19, 2021 Virtual Community Forum and read more below.

    Big Move #1: Retrofitting Existing Buildings

    Energy use in buildings accounts for 69 per cent of GHG emissions in Regina. Emissions include those resulting from heating and cooling spaces, for lighting, and for electricity to run appliances and equipment in homes, schools, offices, and industrial warehouses. To reach net-zero in Regina, all existing buildings in the community will need to be retrofitted to less energy and be more energy-efficient.

    Big Move #2: Net-Zero New Builds

    Ensuring that new buildings are not sources of carbon emissions is key to reaching an ambitious emissions reduction target. Buildings and the systems within them (eg. heating, cooling) are long-lasting assets. If we continue to build buildings that are carbon-emitting, we are locking ourselves into those emissions over the span of 25 years or more, unless costly upgrades are completed before the buildings’ systems are at end of life.

    Big Move #3: Fuel Switching our Heating

    Most of the emissions from buildings in Regina currently come from natural gas used for heating. For new and retrofitted buildings, energy systems will need to be converted to limit emissions. Switching to efficient electric systems, such as heat pumps, is key because grid electricity can be decarbonized with the addition of renewable energy at the individual building or community scale.

    Big Move #4: Renewable energy generation

    One of the most significant low-carbon transition opportunities the community can pursue is to increase renewable energy generation. This means investing in individual and community-scale wind and solar power. Moving to these sources will allow the community to decrease emissions from the electricity grid, which is directly related to emissions levels from electricity use in homes and businesses and in electric vehicles. It also maximizes the emissions reduction benefits of building retrofits and fuel-switching.

    Big Move #5: Reducing Vehicle Emissions

    Regina, like many Canadian cities, is heavily reliant on individual automobile trips to get around. The transportation sector makes up 23 per cent of community emissions on a yearly basis. While we cannot avoid all vehicle trips, there are viable alternatives to gasoline-fueled vehicles. The technology continues to evolve for battery electric vehicles while prices decrease. Other technologies such as hydrogen vehicles are in rapid development. Both solutions require new infrastructure to support their widespread adoption.

    Big Move #6: Increasing Active Transportation and Transit Use

    While low emissions vehicles can help us reduce emissions, increased active transportation and transit use are also important strategies to help us reduce transportation emissions. A well-thought-out active transportation and transit network can help decrease congestion, promote active and healthy lifestyles, and complement urban intensification and mixed-use developments while decreasing emissions.


    Big Move #7: Cleaning and Re-energizing Industry

    Our industrial sector represents one-third of our energy consumption and GHG emissions in Regina. The City needs to continue to have a positive ongoing dialogue with industry stakeholders to encourage industry to consider what their energy transition looks like and to discuss collaborative solutions to mitigating the economic transition risk to a low carbon economy.

  • Register for Virtual Community Forum

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    In October, the City of Regina is hosting two key opportunities for community members to learn more and provide feedback on Regina’s plan to become a renewable city by 2050.

    Renewable Regina Community Forum

    Residents are invited to register online to attend the Renewable Regina Virtual Community Forum to learn more about the big moves Regina must take to become renewable. The forum will take place on Tuesday, October 19 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. via Microsoft Teams Webinar. It will also be recorded for later viewing on Be Heard Regina.

    Pre-registration is encouraged but not required for this event. Those who choose to pre-register will receive an automatic calendar invite via email.

    Renewable Regina Community Survey

    An online community survey will also launch immediately after the forum to help inform Regina’s community-wide low carbon action plan. The survey will be available on Be Heard Regina and will run until November 1.

    Feedback from both activities contribute to the final development of Regina’s Energy & Sustainability Framework. The Framework will outline the actions Regina needs to take over the next 29 years to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and switch to renewable energy sources by 2050.

  • Share Your Thoughts on Vehicle Idling

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    Did you know that 24 per cent of Regina’s total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are produced by vehicles?

    It is estimated that if every Regina driver reduced idling by just one minute each day, we could reduce GHG emissions by about 6,000 tonnes in a year. That’s equal to taking 1,500 cars off the road.

    The City of Regina is exploring options to reduce GHG emissions from vehicle idling, including a potential community-wide program. We want to hear how supportive you are of changes to your vehicle idling habits that could reduce our local carbon footprint.

    Visit Regina.ca/idle before August 31 to share your thoughts on reducing idle emissions.

  • Understanding the Business as Planned Model

    The Community Advisory Group met for its second workshop in July and was presented with an overview of Regina’s current energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory. This inventory data provides a basis for the “business as planned” modeling to predict Regina’s future energy consumption and GHG emissions based on current initiatives. The modeling will identify the gap between the future emissions projected and the reductions that will need to take place in order to achieve net-zero by 2050. Low-carbon scenarios will be identified as options to address this gap.


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  • June Project Update

    In the past few weeks, we have celebrated two specific project milestones toward the development of Regina’s Energy & Sustainability Framework (ESF):

    • The Community Advisory Group held its first workshop on June 3. During this session, Group members heard an overview of the project’s timeline and their role and met the City’s consulting partners at Sustainability Solutions Group to better understand the work they will be doing.
    • The project team finished collecting all the data necessary (more than 70 data sets over six years) for creating the energy consumption and emissions inventory for Regina, both the community and municipal corporation.

    Team members have also been attending the Regina Farmers Market where we are spreading awareness of the Energy & Sustainability Framework. You can find us there most Wednesdays and Saturdays, so stop by to get some information, ask some questions, or just to say hi!


    What’s Next

    The next Community Advisory Group workshop will be July 6. This workshop will focus on discussing energy and emissions reduction opportunities and target setting.

    In July, the project team will get the first look at the completed Energy & Emissions Inventory. The inventory will be used to create a ‘business as usual’ model. That model shows what Regina’s energy use and GHG emissions will look like from now until 2050 in the absence of the Framework.

    View the project timeline.

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  • April 29 Virtual Presentation

    You’re invited to learn more about the development of Regina’s Energy & Sustainability Framework (ESF).

    On Thursday, April 29, 2021 at 12 p.m., Sustainability Solutions Group will host a virtual Microsoft Teams Live presentation. The ESF consultant firm will outline the research, technical work and engagement that will be conducted to complete Regina’s community-wide energy use and greenhouse gas emissions inventory, as well as the emissions reduction targets, scenarios and policy choices the city will need to make to be renewable by 2050.

    View the presentation:


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  • Community Advisory Group Established

    The City of Regina has formally established a Community Advisory Group to help guide development of Regina’s Energy & Sustainability Framework (ESF).

    The group will be consulted regularly throughout the development of the ESF and will provide feedback on the recommendations in the Framework report before it is considered by City Council in late 2021.

    The City extended invitations earlier this year to more than 60 organizations to seek interest in being participants. The Community Advisory Group includes members from more than 25 organizations representing environmental and sustainable energy advocacy, economic development, business, industry, education, labour unions, social and well-being groups and the Indigenous community.

    Membership on the Community Advisory Group is as follows:

    • Accessibility Advisory Committee (City of Regina)
    • Co-op Refinery Complex
    • CUPE Local 21
    • David Suzuki Foundation
    • Distributed Energy Association of Saskatchewan
    • Economic Development Regina
    • EnviroCollective
    • Fridays for Future Regina
    • File Hills Qu'Appelle Tribal Council
    • Metis Nation of SK
    • Miller Highschool Environmental Club
    • Regina Citizens Public Transit Coalition (RCPTC)
    • Regina Catholic School Division
    • Regina Civic Middle Management Association (RCMMA)
    • Regina & District Chamber of Commerce
    • Regina & Region Home Builders' Assoc.
    • Righting Relations Regina
    • Saskatchewan Electric Vehicle Assoc.
    • SaskEnergy
    • Saskatchewan Environmental Society
    • Saskatchewan Polytechnic
    • SaskPower
    • Senior's University Group
    • Unifor Local 594
    • University of Regina
    • Wascana Solar Co-operative Ltd.

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  • Consultant Hired to Begin Technical Research

    The City of Regina has awarded the contract for third-party consultant services to support development of the Energy & Sustainability Framework.

    Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG), a firm well known for completing similar frameworks for approximately 60 communities throughout Canada, has been hired. The scope of the firm’s work will include a community-wide energy use and emissions inventory, creating reduction targets and producing scenarios that model policy choices and actions for the next 30 years.

    SSG will use a six-phase process that has become widely accepted for energy and sustainability planning, and which includes public engagement at various points of the planning. The City of Regina is committed to ensuring that the Energy & Sustainability Framework also builds on work already being done in the community and is informed by a broad, diverse and inclusive range of stakeholders. The Community Advisory Group, which represents many of those stakeholder groups, will be finalized in the coming weeks.

    The Energy & Sustainability Framework and Action Plan will outline the steps needed to achieve a renewable Regina by 2050, including actions focused on land use and transportation planning, development and building permit guidelines, energy efficient building design, waste management, energy conservation, regulatory and financial tools, among other components.

    A total of six proposals were received from third-party consultants interested in helping develop the Framework. SSG is completing the work for just under $230,000 and is beginning immediately.

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Page last updated: 26 October 2021, 18:03