Wind Energy and Its Impact on Future Environmental Policy Planning: Powering Renewable Energy in Canada and Abroad


Kamaal Zaidi


With the rising demand for energy from finite conventional sources such as coal and natural gas, the emphasis on modern environmental policy planning for renewable energy is rapidly gaining attention. In particular, wind energy projects that include wind turbine technology is helping drive this trend towards cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable forms of energy that provide electricity to consumers. This paper provides an introductory review of wind energy, outlining its history, technology, and current legislative frameworks adopted by various nations in harnessing renewable energy. This analysis includes a thorough discussion of Canada’s approach, but continues with renewable wind programs in the United States, nations within the European Union, Australia, China, India, and Japan. The paper also updates many of the recent developments in these nations, revealing the commonalities in approaching wind energy applications. Key issues related to wind energy include legislative frameworks adopted for renewable energy, financial incentives offered by governments to companies investing and maintaining renewable sources of energy like wind, interconnection of grid systems, the development of onshore and offshore wind farms, and market-based approaches that are contributing to reducing electricity prices in the energy sector. However, the author is careful to recognize how various challenges are experienced by legislators, industry officials, and consumers towards establishing a meaningful environmental policy of renewable wind energy.


Environmental Law

Date of this Version

February 2006