The Cumberland Energy Authority was formed in 2012 through an Inter-Municipal Agreement between the Municipality of the County of Cumberland, the Town of Parrsboro, and the former Town of Springhill to promote regional energy development.
A minewater geothermal business park in Springhill is closer to reality with the concept design phase funded and awarded.
The Government of Canada, through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s (ACOA) Innovative Communities Fund, is providing a $125,000 contribution for the concept design. The Cumberland Energy Authority is also contributing $125,000.
The Cumberland Energy Authority, Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy (FORCE) and Parrsbourgh Shore Historical Society have partnered to offer a Renewable Energy Education Program (REEP) aimed at all levels of primary and secondary schools in Cumberland County.
REEP offers support for classes to travel to Ottawa House by-the-Sea Museum and the FORCE Visitor Center to see renewable energy applications and projects in Cumberland County.
“This program was intended to support classroom objectives while showcasing the opportunities right here in Cumberland,” said FORCE operating manager Sandra Currie.
The program was designed to compliment curriculum for students in primary through grade 12 as a full day field trip. Attendees learn with first-hand experiences about the history, geology, environment and innovative science that is abundant in Parrsboro and Cumberland County.
“Partnering with FORCE to provide such a well-rounded approach to school field trips is an easy decision. Education is such an important driver in environmental stewardship,” added Rennie Bugley, chair of the board of directors of the Cumberland Energy Authority.
The Cumberland Energy Authority is a project of the Municipality of Cumberland, intent on setting the standard of leadership in local government for the development of renewable energy, support of the progressive energy industry and the encouragement of a sustainable future for our communities.
The development of on-shore natural gas is a topic with the potential for dramatic impacts on Cumberland County and Nova Scotia. With Cumberland likely home to the largest gas deposits in Nova Scotia, any potential development would likely see a strong focus here.
The links below are not intended to be exhaustive, rather sources that have been used by the Cumberland Energy Authority and the Municipality of Cumberland to explore the topic.
In the fall of 2018, the council of the Municipality of Cumberland decided to review the Wheeler Report to gain a base understanding of what natural gas development is and how it might impact Nova Scotians. A link to the Wheeler Report can be found here.
In the 2018 fall semester, an interdiciplinary team of masters level students from Dalhousie University preformed a research project on the merits and demerits of natural gas development with a focus on what had been published since the Wheeler Report. Click here for a PDF of the report. Click here for the appendicies of the report.
The 2019 edition of the Energy Symposium will be focused on natural gas development, and will allow for community learning and discussion with expert speakers and industry leaders. Registration for the event can be found at this link.
An announcement was made October 15th at the Dr. Carson & Marion Murray Community Centre regarding provincial government support for three new solar energy projects in the Cumberland region. Participants included Amherst Mayor David Kogan, FORCE Facilities Manager Sandra Currie, Municipality of Cumberland Warden Al Gillis, Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance and the Treasury Board Karen Casey, and Executive Director of the Cumberland Energy Authority Raymond Hickey.
"Cumberland County: Trailblazers in Climate Change"
This years Symposium theme, Cumberland County: Trailblazers in Climate Change, is focused around building off of the 2017 Climate Change Retreat. On Thursday, May 24th, 2018, we brought together past thinkers, community members, academics, & members from the renewable energy sector. We explored the outcomes of the 2017 Climate Change Retreat, and dicussed moving forward in the fight against climate change. The vast amount of renewable energy resources within Cumberland County were also explored.
The Centre for Local Prosperity also joined us to showcase their documentary film "Climate Change & the Human Prospect", that was inspired by the outcomes and events from the Thinkers Lodge Climate Change Retreat.
Sessions throughout the event addressed climate change action in the Cumberland County Region, building relationships with Indigenous communities, Cumberland County’s energy resources, the outcomes of the last retreat, and more. Our Keynote sessions included Fundy FORCE General Manager Tony Wright, Cumberland Energy Authority Executive Director Ray Hickey, and Capital Projects Engineer Brian Herteis from the Municipality of the County of Cumberland.
Dalhousie University masters students partner with the Cumberland Energy Authority
Dalhousie University masters students, in partnership with the Cumberland Energy Authority, have conducted a review of tidal power readiness in Cumberland County. This study identifies local opportunities for tidal power in the Cumberland area involving economic development opportunities for residential and commercial development, land-use planning, and necessary infrastructure updates.
Monday November 7th, 2016 at 10:40AM, Cape Sharp Tidal safely deployed the first OpenHydro Open-Centre turbine at the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (FORCE) near Parrsboro, Nova Scotia. The operation—our first attempt—was completed in one tidal cycle, while holding station in the Crown Lease Area.
Atlantic Towing’s Kingfisher towed the Scotia Tide deployment barge from West Bay to the site early this morning. Once in position over our berth, the Cape Sharp Tidal turbine was lowered to the sea floor in a 4-hour operation on an ebb tide. Several expert marine partners contributed to this precision work, including Nova Scotia companies Atlantic Towing (Dartmouth), Seaforth (Dartmouth), Mike Huntley (Kentville) and RMI (Dartmouth). More than 25 local crews participated.
During the remainder of this week’s deployment window, we will be focused on completing the grid-connection to FORCE’s subsea cable, and delivering Nova Scotia’s first in-stream tidal energy to the Provincial power grid. In the next few days, we’ll connect the turbine cable tail and our Y-shaped connector cable by lifting each from the sea floor and joining them on the deck of Atlantic Towing’s Beaver Barge.
We owe thanks to many who contributed to the success of turbine deployment: to FORCE for on-shore coordination and hosting; to local fishermen who lent their knowledge and understanding of the Minas Passage; and to many local Parrsboro businesses for extending their operating hours to support our people during our time in town.
Thank you for your ongoing interest and support of the project.
Community Relations Manager
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Cumberland Energy Authority, FORCE & Minas Energy have partnered to educate students about the region's tidal power. On April 18, 90 students from Spring Street Academy travelled to Parrsboro to visit the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy to learn about renewable energy. Following the tour, students were asked to apply imagination, manual dexterity, and a love for art in creating their own personal versions of what is possible at the FORCE site.
The Cumberland Energy Authority has partnered with students from the Management Without Borders program at Dalhousie University to develop a comprehensive external/internal analysis and a preliminary communications plan for the development of a Springhill Geothermal Green Industrial Park.
The report recommends the following:
Investigate funding/incentive mechanisms to promote development.
To read the full report, please see pdf Springhill Geothermal Green Industrial Park Initiative (2.51 MB) .
The Cumberland Energy Authority announced a new partnership with the Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment to research the commercial potential for geothermal energy in Springhill.