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OTTAWA — The National Energy Board says Canada’s addiction to fossil fuels will peak in two years, but this will not affect economic growth.

The board’s annual energy futures report for the first time says with climate change policies and growth in clean energy, Canada’s consumption of fossil fuels to run cars and heat homes will max out before 2020, start to decline slightly and then flatline over the next two decades.

It is the first time the board has suggested fossil fuel use will stop growing after just a year ago forecasting slower, but continued, growth all the way to 2040.

If Canada’s price on carbon grows past the current plan of $50 a tonne by 2022, or adoption of electric cars and solar power is faster than expected, fossil fuel consumption will plummet further.

The NEB believes wind energy production will double and solar energy production more than triple over the next quarter century.

The report says economic growth remains similar regardless of whether a higher carbon price or faster technology growth pushes fossil fuel use down even more.

The Canadian Press

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