Solar power

I just listened to a BBC podcast where this ex-Internet entrepreneur said that solar power would be the #1 source of power in the U.S. within 30 years. The economic development potential of that statement is in the billions of dollars. Someone told me that you can’t do solar power in Canada because it is too cold (even as the largest solar farm in the country is being put up in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

The idea here is to find something that New Brunswick can truly be a leader at – in economic development terms. I read another press release where Premier Graham is going on and on about how innovative New Brunswick is. That is political posturing in a high art form (or not). New Brunswick is among the least innovative provinces or states in North America – if you are looking at R&D spending or Phds per capita or patents per capita or any of these measures.

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0 Responses to Solar power

  1. Anonymous says:

    Wrong measures David.

    Patents and PhDs are measures of creativity, not innovation.

    Following the Conference Board of Canada definition for innovation, you need both creativity and economic or social benefit.

    That said, NB’s innovation record is poor. There is every excuse in the book used for this; companies are too small, VC is not available, more university funding needed etc. This is hogwash. Companies need to look in the mirror to find the problem; we need to stop bellaching about high energy costs (which are lower than many countries), the high dollar, and increasing labour costs and be innovative to compete.

    Here is where the anchor industry arguement comes into play. In ON, PQ and BC the auto, aerospace, and biotech industries have been accelerated with massive federal R&D spending so companies are encouraged to spend on R&D because their $1 of risk is effectively multiplied 2 or 3 times.

    If we got our target right, and alternate energy may be a good consideration, we could get similar assistance.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey, not only is NB one of the most innovative jurisdictions in the world, Fredericton is one of the top 7 most intelligent cities in the world. More so than Charlotte, NC or Montevideo, or Seattle, or Osaka, or …

    Am I living in a parallel universe totally suffused with astonishingly high levels of BS, or is it just me?