GFM Network News


Guide empowers wind energy customers

The Canadian Wind Energy Association has set up a guide to help consumers decide if purchasing a personal wind turbine will be a benefit. Wind energy might seem like a great answer to cutting utility expenses, but it’s not as easy as just putting up a turbine. Sean Whittaker, vice-president of policy for CanWEA, said

Wind farm encounters woes

Proponents behind the 300-megawatt wind farm announced for the St. Joseph area last week say they are confident they can raise the necessary capital to proceed with the project, despite financial uncertainty facing one of the project’s key partners. The Australian-based parent company of Babcock & Brown Canada, the partner in charge of financing and


Energizing small communities

District energy projects bring more than heat to communities. Carl Chaboyer has spent years working with district energy projects and says the benefits outweigh any possible deterrents, including fiscal. Speaking to the Biofibe 08 conference held in Winnipeg, Nov. 14, 2008, Chaboyer said it is debatable whether the projects he worked with were actually the

Province assists organic startup

”We’re hoping to encourage about another 110 farmers to grow organics.” – JOHN HOLLINGER With demand for organically produced foods exceeding the local supply, the Manitoba government wants more farmers to consider organic farming. It has introduced a program to help producers with the transitioning costs. Provincial organics specialist John Hollinger said converting to an

“Organic province” possible, not probable

Should Manitoba become an organic province? A farmer complaining about tight pesticide restrictions mused about how this could be coming. While he was speaking in jest, he might find support for the move. At the Organic Producers Association of Manitoba (OPAM) fall seminar here Nov. 15, provincial organic specialist John Hollinger announced a small program


Biofuel processing kicked up a notch

A smoky flavouring could be the new sexy biofuel of the future. Randal Goodfellow, senior vice-president of corporate relations for Ottawa-based biofuel firm Ensyn, pitched his product to conference attendees at Biofibe 08 in Winnipeg and welcomed potential partnerships. Using a mix of biomass products, such as wood, flax shives or corn, and a process

Investors cautiously interested

With an economic crisis looming, pitching new ideas and finding investors for new innovations might be difficult – but not impossible, the president of the Toronto-based mutual fund Criterion Investments says. Ian McPherson said clean energy and agricultural sustainability are perfect business ventures for forward-looking investors. He said one of the biggest problems facing investors

Safety message tough sell

For the province’s farm safety co-ordinator, throwing a Farm Safety and Health meeting once meant booking a hall, picking up dozens of doughnuts and a coffee urn, then presenting to a near empty room. Glen Blahey quickly learned not to take the low turnouts personally. Having a farm background himself, he knows that while most


Mandates needed for district energy

“Denmark for example mandated that every community had to come up with a heating plan.” – Johann Buijk District energy strategies are bringing great benefit to communities in Europe, reducing reliance on fossil fuels. In Manitoba the idea is a tougher sell. Standing in the way of our progress in this system is the fact

Hemp provides many solutions

“We need options, otherwise we’ll be a wheat-canola country from coast to coast and that’s not sustainable.” – DARYL DOMITRUK Hemp is the solution for many agricultural and environmental concerns in Canada according to Daryl Domitruk. The director of Agri-Industry Development and Innovation for the province said Manitoba is especially well suited to position itself