Solar Energy Maps Canada

This page contains a complete set of solar energy maps (also called solar insolation, solar photovoltaic, or solar irradiance maps), along with the estimated monthly solar production for every province and territory in Canada.

Solar Energy Map Canada

Average Production: 1133 kWh/kW/yr

Main Variation Weather, Latitude

Best Province: Saskatchewan

Worst Province: Yukon Territory

Jump down to provincial maps


Solar Energy Maps

Solar Power Maps Canada Scale

These solar energy maps are visual representations of the amount of energy that a solar photovoltaic system can produce, based on the intensity of light that reaches the Earth’s surface. This can also be called solar production potential.

Solar production potential (in units of kWh/kW/yr) is the same as saying:

“How much energy (in units of kWh) can I produce per year (yr) given the size of my solar power system (in units of kW).”

As the units suggest, production potential is used primarily to calculate the size of solar system that you need to offset your usage, along with how much that system would cost.

For example, in a province with high solar potential like Saskatchewan – you would need less solar panels to produce the same amount of energy than in a province with a lower solar energy potential. The system would therefore also cost less.

You can easily calculate the size of the system that you would need to offset your annual electricity usage, as well as your total system costs by visiting our Solar Installation Costs page.


Solar Production Potential by Province

Solar Energy Production Potential Canada

We’ve gone ahead and calculated the average solar production potential based on the five most populated cities for every province and territory. 

This capacity to turn light into electricity is also a major ranking factor in our Provincial Solar Rankings.

Here is the annual average equivalent of full sunlight hours broken down by province:

#1 Saskatchewan1330 kWh/kW/yr
#2 Alberta1276 kWh/kW/yr
#3 Manitoba1272 kWh/kW/yr
#4 Québec1183 kWh/kW/yr
#5 Ontario1166 kWh/kW/yr
#6 New Brunswick1142 kWh/kW/yr
#7 Prince Edward Island1104 kWh/kW/yr
#8 Nunavut1092 kWh/kW/yr
#9 Nova Scotia1090 kWh/kW/yr
#10 Northwest Territories1064 kWh/kW/yr
#11 British Columbia1004 kWh/kW/yr
#12 Yukon Territory965 kWh/kW/yr
#13 Newfoundland & Labrador949 kWh/kW/yr
#14 Canada Average1133 kWh/kW/yr

Methods: Solar irradiation was calculated using the “municip_kWh” spreadsheet from the photovoltaic potential and insolation dataset from Natural Resources Canada. Average annual irradiation where the installation angle equals degrees latitude -15 from the top five populated cities from each province was used. A 25% efficiency loss factor was then applied before getting the final kWh/kW/yr number.

Canada’s Best and Worst

The provinces with the best solar potential are located on the Canadian prairies: Saskatchewan, Alberta, and Manitoba. This is primarily because of relatively sunny weather all year around.

The province with the worst solar potential is Newfoundland and Labrador. This is primarily because of high annual cloud cover. The worst territory is the Yukon – primarily because of high latitude and cloud weather.

The best place in Canada for producing solar power is Torquay, Saskatchewan with a solar energy potential of 1384 kWh/kW/yr.

The worst place in Canada is at the small research base located in Eureka, Nunavut which has a solar energy potential of just 780 kWh/kW/yr.

The best month for producing solar power in Canada is in April, when days are mid-length and skies are clear. The worst month for producing solar power in Canada is December, when days are short.


Solar Energy Maps by Province

Saskatchewan

The average solar power system in Saskatchewan will produce approximately 1330 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Saskatchewan
Solar Energy Map Saskatchewan

This yearly average decreases as you move north and east in the province and increases as you move south and west. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Saskatoon would produce about 1,350 kWh/yr
  • Regina would produce about 1,361 kWh/yr
  • Prince Albert would produce about 1,300 kWh/yr
  • Moose Jaw would produce about 1,363 kWh/yr
  • Lloydminster would produce 1,278 kWh/yr

Alberta

The average solar power system in Alberta will produce approximately 1276 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Alberta
Solar Energy Map Alberta

This yearly average decreases as you move north and west in the province and increases as you move south and east. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Calgary would produce about 1,292 kWh/yr
  • Edmonton would produce about 1,246 kWh/yr
  • Red Deer would produce about 1,265 kWh/yr
  • Lethbridge would produce about 1,330 kWh/yr
  • Sherwood Park would produce 1,246 kWh/yr

Manitoba

The average solar power system in Manitoba will produce approximately 1272 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Manitoba
Solar Energy Map Manitoba

This yearly average decreases as you move north and east in the province and increases as you move south and west. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Winnipeg would produce about 1,281 kWh/yr
  • St. Claude would produce about 1,309 kWh/yr
  • Brandon would produce about 1,341 kWh/yr
  • Selkirk would produce about 1,267 kWh/yr
  • Dauphin would produce about 1,303 kWh/yr
  • The Pas would produce 1,202 kWh/yr

Québec

The average solar power system in Québec will produce approximately 1183 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Quebec
Solar Energy Map Quebec

This yearly average decreases as you move north in the province and increases as you move south.For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Quebec City would produce about 1,139kWh/yr
  • Montreal would produce about 1,194 kWh/yr
  • Laval would produce about 1,199 kWh/yr
  • Gatineau would produce about 1,103 kWh/yr
  • Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan would produce 1,278 kWh/yr

Ontario

The average solar power system in Ontario will produce approximately 1166 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Ontario
Solar Energy Map Ontario

This yearly average decreases as you move north in the province and increases as you move south. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Toronto would produce about 1,163 kWh/yr
  • Ottawa would produce about 1,199 kWh/yr
  • Mississauga would produce about 1,160 kWh/yr
  • Brampton would produce about 1,155 kWh/yr
  • Hamilton would produce 1,152 kWh/yr

New Brunswick

The average solar power system in New Brunswick will produce approximately 1142 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data New Brunswick
Solar Energy Map New Brunswick

This yearly average decreases as you move north and west in the province and increases as you move south and east. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Moncton would produce about 1,144 kWh/yr
  • Saint John would produce about 1,133 kWh/yr
  • Fredericton would produce about 1,147 kWh/yr
  • Dieppe would produce about 1,144 kWh/yr
  • Riverview would produce 1,141 kWh/yr

Prince Edward Island

The average solar power system in Prince Edward Island will produce approximately 1104 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Prince Edward Island
Solar Energy Map Prince Edward Island

This yearly average decreases as you move east in the province and increases as you move west. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Charlottetown would produce about 1,103 kWh/yr
  • Summerside would produce about 1,125 kWh/yr
  • Stratford would produce about 1,100 kWh/yr
  • Cornwall would produce about 1,106 kWh/yr
  • Montague would produce 1,087 kWh/yr

Nunavut

The average solar power system in Nunavut will produce approximately 1092 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Nunavut
Solar Energy Map Nunavut

This yearly average decreases as you move north in the province and increases as you move south. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Iqaluit would produce about 1,057 kWh/yr
  • Rankin Inlet would produce about 1,150 kWh/yr
  • Arviat would produce about 1,144 kWh/yr
  • Baker Lake would produce about 1,109 kWh/yr
  • Igloolik would produce 999 kWh/yr

Nova Scotia

The average solar power system in Nova Scotia will produce approximately 1090 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiance Data Nova Scotia
Solar Energy Map Nova Scotia

This yearly average decreases as you move north and east in the province and increases as you move south and west. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Halifax would produce about 1,073 kWh/yr
  • Dartmouth would produce about 1,076 kWh/yr
  • Truro would produce about 1,095 kWh/yr
  • Amherst would produce about 1,125 kWh/yr
  • New Glasgow would produce 1,081 kWh/yr

Northwest Territories

The average solar power system in the Northwest Territories will produce approximately 1064 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Northwest Territories
Solar Energy Map Northwest Territories

This yearly average decreases as you move north in the province and increases as you move south. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Yellowknife would produce about 1,095 kWh/yr
  • Hay River would produce about 1,125 kWh/yr
  • Inuvik would produce about 895 kWh/yr
  • Fort Smith would produce about 1,131 kWh/yr
  • Fort Simpson would produce 1,076 kWh/yr

British Columbia

The average solar power system in British Columbia will produce approximately 1004 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data British Columbia
Solar Energy Map British Columbia

This yearly average decreases as you move north and west in the province and increases as you move south and east. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Vancouver would produce about 1,007 kWh/yr
  • Surrey would produce about 996 kWh/yr
  • Burnaby would produce about 991 kWh/yr
  • Richmond would produce about 1,027 kWh/yr
  • Abbotsford would produce 996 kWh/yr

Yukon Territory

The average solar power system in the Yukon Territory will produce approximately 965 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Yukon Territory
Solar Energy Map Yukon Territory

This yearly average decreases as you move east in the province and increases as you move west. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • Whitehorse would produce about 961 kWh/yr
  • Dawson would produce about 1,027 kWh/yr
  • Watson Lake would produce about 947 kWh/yr
  • Faro would produce about 939 kWh/yr
  • Carcross would produce 953 kWh/yr

Newfoundland & Labrador

The average solar power system in Newfoundland & Labrador will produce approximately 949 kWh of energy per kW per year.

Monthly Solar Irradiation Data Newfoundland and Labrador
Solar Energy Map Newfoundland and Labrador

This yearly average decreases as you move south in the province and increases as you move north. For example, a 1kW solar system in:

  • St. John’s would produce about 936 kWh/yr
  • Conception Bay would produce about 947 kWh/yr
  • Mount Pearl would produce about 933 kWh/yr
  • Paradise River would produce about 977 kWh/yr
  • Corner Brook would produce 950 kWh/yr

Other Sustainable Resource Maps (view only)

Geothermal Power Map Canada

Geothermal Power

Geothermal power potential map mW/m³.

Wind Speed Map Canada

Wind Speed

Wind speed map (m/s).


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John
6 months ago

When were these graphs made

doug mcdonell
1 year ago

It would be great to see the solar maps combined with the regional cost of a years electric heat, that would give an indication of the best breakeven locations. http://www.neb-one.gc.ca/nrg/ntgrtd/mrkt/ftrrtcl/2018-12-06rsdntlslr-eng.html