Thank you. I appreciate the opportunity to discuss this topic with the committee.
I am joined here today by two colleagues who may come to the microphone if the opportunity calls for it. One is Mr. Marc D'Iorio, who is the director general of our Office of Energy, Research and Development. The other is Ms. Paula Vieira, who is the director of alternative fuels policy and programs from our Office of Energy Efficiency.
I have distributed a deck and I will walk through it quickly. Then, as suggested, I am more than willing to respond to questions.
Natural Resources Canada is obviously not the transportation organization of the Government of Canada. On the second slide, you see a number of drivers, and the one for us is the environmental driver. It is the third bullet down, and highlighted.
Reduction in energy consumption has a direct effect on emissions of traditional internal combustion engine vehicles, which of course make up a large majority of the current fleet. As such, innovations targeted to improve fuel efficiency continue to be importantin that they achieve emission reductions. Also, the transition to an electric fleet has a strong positive impact on emissions over traditional internal combustion engine vehicles and will become increasingly important in meeting emissions targets. The challenge, of course, is the cold weather in Canada. There are some specific challenges associated with it that are part of the innovation challenge.
On the next slide, slide 3, you get a picture of why transportation innovation is necessary from an energy R and D perspective. The transportation sector is the second-largest consumer, after industry, and represents close to 30% of total energy demand. I will also point out that transportation is, at the tailpipe, the largest contributor to our greenhouse gas emissions, representing about 37% of Canada's contribution to emissions.
The technology that can help reduce both of those generally falls into three categories. There are game changers, and I would categorize the electric vehicle as a game changer; there are new vehicles that are already in the pipe—things such as gas direct injection, lightweighting of vehicles—and then there's the legacy fleet. There are things we can do there as well. The innovation around tires and tire tread, tire design, tire pressure, the aerodynamics of vehicles, driver training, and intelligent traffic systems can all help with the current fleet.
One of the questions we were asked is what federal programs there are to support research, development, and demonstration of transportation technologies. They are listed on slide 4. The six sub-bullets under Natural Resources Canada are programs that, through a period of time, we have delivered. They add up over a five-year average to an investment of about $70.5 million. There are other federal programs listed below those. I'm not sure I have captured them all, but they're all windows to innovation identified through other federal programs.
The next slide, slide 5, speaks to the investment levels, and governments are identified at the top left of the slide as having invested $118 million over the period of 2009-2010, whereas industry has spent almost $180 million. Again, you can see the breakdown at the bottom left of the departments that have been involved on the federal side. The slide gives you on the right a bit of a breakdown on fundamental research, applied research, and pre-commercialization, and then the technology development and demonstration, which is the way we break the innovation system up into its component parts.
If anybody wants to do the math, you'll recognize quickly that the $42 million in the bottom left of the chart doesn't add up to the $62 million in the top right. That's because of a $20-million investment by the Canadian Foundation for Innovation that is not captured in the R and D expenditures in the bottom left.
From an NRCan perspective, I want to open the door today to a conversation in three areas: the electrification of vehicles, technology options for the integration of lightweight materials, and how we can get natural gas to serve as a fuel that can be deployed into the heavy and medium-weight vehicle fleet, which is an exercise we have under way.
The first is the electric vehicle technology road map. I will be speaking to road maps. I'll open the door to it now, but I'm happy to answer more questions.
We found this to be a very effective tool. It brings the whole system together. By system, in this case, I mean the value chain right from the producers of electricity through to the automakers through to people who have to deal with things such as charging stations—what the codes and standards would have to be in your house in order to plug in a car, etc. By bringing the whole community together, you get a road map that says what the barriers are to achieving that objective. As you can see on the slide, we did it through the process of four workshops that were pulled together.
I brought a document called “The Electric Vehicle Technology Roadmap”. I'll leave copies for all members of the committee.
The recommendations from that particular road map fall into the four categories listed on slide 8. They are technology, codes and standards, studies and assessments, and education and outreach. I want to stress at this point that these recommendations are not aimed at government exclusively; they are aimed at that full community that gets together. There is a role for industry, a role for government, a role for the purchaser, etc.
Integration of lightweight materials is slide 9. As the slide states, the pathway to achieve vehicle fuel consumption and emissions reduction involves a number of things, but lightweighting is a very important one, particularly if we are going to make a move to electric vehicles, because there is a weight compensation issue associated with the heavy batteries that are necessary to have those various forms of electric vehicles work. The challenges with new materials are also real in the case of corrosion protection, or being able to join different metals together and not have a crash test that is inferior to the standards that have been set for the country, or understanding how the materials affect vehicle performance, etc.
The technology themes for integration of lightweight materials, on slide 10, fall into those three categories. You can see the sub-bullets underneath. The goal is to end up with a vehicle that is lighter, obviously, and it's done through the various efficiencies that can be generated through those various components.
Moving on, the third area is natural gas. We basically understand the technology; the issue is deployment in the Canadian situation. We took a road map approach there as well and brought the whole community together, but there it's geared to understanding the barriers to deploying natural gas in an operational way. The road map focuses on heavy vehicles in heavily used corridors and on return-to-base vehicles such as municipal vehicles, garbage trucks, delivery vehicles, postal vehicles, etc.—things that can go back to a central place to be refuelled when necessary.
The targeted recommendations on slide 12 basically break down into the four areas that are identified. The four key recommendations include de-risking investments and early adoption, addressing information gaps, increasing capacity to sustain markets, and ensuring ongoing competitiveness.
In the case of both the electric and the natural gas vehicles, harmonization of standards across the country and with the U.S. is critical to making sure that fleet users aren't limited by either interprovincial or international barriers in terms of the codes and standards associated with their use.
We also work in an international context. I've identified three international collaborations: with the International Energy Agency, Canada is quite active not only in transportation but also in other energy areas; we are quite active with the Canada-U.S. clean energy dialogue, which has a transportation component; and we're in the process of developing a collaboration with China in the joint S and T committee. That has not been confirmed in terms of the transportation piece yet, but it is under negotiation.
In conclusion, research, development, and demonstration programs have already contributed to the advancement of Canadian transportation technologies right through from concept to commercialization. Road maps, both the deployment style and the technology approach, have been very useful policy instruments for us in making sure that the full community is aware and involved and owns the results. We're starting to see implementation in both those cases as efforts are being made by the industry, by our colleagues in the provincial governments, and naturally by our own departments.
Thanks very much.