Wintry Canada to Use Solar Power to Heat Homes
TORONTO Canada, better known for snow than sun, plans to build a 52-home solar powered community in Alberta that will harvest the sun's rays in summer and use them to heat homes in winter, the government said Wednesday.
The Drake Landing development, already under construction in the western province, will be the first of its kind in North America. Officials say it will cut greenhouse gas emissions by 260 tonnes a year and supply the homes with more than 90 percent of the heat they need.
"This system significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions and demonstrates the importance of using clean, renewable energy sources," Tommy Banks, a Canadian parliamentarian, said in a release.
Under the scheme, solar panels mounted on garage roofs will collect energy from the sun and store it underground. Come winter, the thermal energy will heat homes through a central district heating system.
Some C$5.5 million ($4,5 million) has been invested so far in the project, which is jointly funded by the governments of Canada and Alberta and by a number of Canadian companies.