ARC Solar About Us
About Us
Why Solar?
The Facts
The Facts
Case Studies
Useful Links
Frequently Asked Questions
Contact Us

Canadians and Kyoto

Canadians’ commitment to a secure future is evident through our ratification of the Kyoto Accord.  The goal is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 6% below our 1990 levels by 2012.

Arc Solar is able to help individuals and businesses meet their portion of the Kyoto Accord.

By utilizing solar thermal collectors for hot water and/or space heating, you can save upwards of 70% of home hot water and heating costs.  This results in a direct decrease in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, as fossil fuel heating sources are replaced with renewable solar energy.

Residential Hot Water Demands and Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The average household domestic hot water usage is 186 litres/day.  This corresponds to a domestic hot water load of 14.4 GJ/year.  

With inefficiencies, the actual energy used to heat domestic hot water averages 24.9 GJ/year per household.

Domestic Hot Water represents 22% of annual household energy consumption.

Usage and emissions depend on a number of factors, including number of people in the household, water usage patterns, and heating source. For example, electric water heaters are typically more efficient than gas water heaters, resulting in the average energy to heat domestic water being 21.2 GJ/house/year with electric, versus 35.3 GJ/house/year with fossil fuels.

Although the energy to heat residential hot water decreased by 1.9GJ per household over the past 10 years, the emissions per unit energy increased over this period, from 53.3 to 56.2 tons GHG per year. So unfortunately, GHG reductions that should have been recognized with decreases in DHW energy usage, have been offset by increased emissions.

The result is that the average Canadian household still produces 1400kg of GHG emissions per year to heat their water.

Canada’s 11.9 million households produce 16.6 trillion kilograms of greenhouse gas emissions every year for water heating, and 40.5 million tonnes for space heating.

In total, the average household releases an average of 6.83 tonnes of greenhouse gasses per year, consuming an average of 140 GJ per year.

Water Requirements Energy Requirements Energy Usage Greenhouse Emissions
186 L/day 14.4 GJ/year 24.9 GJ/year 1400 kg/year

Commercial Hot Water Demands and Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Commercial buildings average energy intensity is 1.59 GJ/m2 per year. This includes 221.6x106 GJ of electricity, 221x106 GJ of gas, and 14.6x106 GJ of oil consumed by 137,000 commercial buildings per year.

Including institutional buildings, the average commercial energy use is 1.79GJ/m2 per year. This produces 58.6 tonnes GHG/TJ, or 105 kg GHG/m2. Water heating represents 6.7% of the energy demand.  6.5 kg of greenhouse gases are emitted per square meter to heat water.

Water Requirements Energy Usage Greenhouse Emissions
120 MJ/m2/year 6.5 kg/m2/year

Residential Energy Savings and Greenhouse Gas Reductions

By meeting only 35% of your annual hot water needs through solar energy, you prevent 500kg of GHG emissions from being released into the atmosphere.

That’s a big difference you can make!

The bonus is that 5 GJ of usable solar heat saves 8.7GJ of other energy sources. In addition to removing greenhouse gases, you experience continued savings on your energy bill, long after the solar thermal system’s payback period of 2-7years has ended! Solar thermal energy is cost effective for the customer, creates jobs and economic growth, and ensures long-term sustainability.

Water Requirements Solar Energy Source Energy Savings Greenhouse Emission Reduction
186 L/day 35% 24.9 GJ/year 500 kg/year

Not only does solar energy reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions now, it ensures a sustainable future for our children.