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Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has announced the Canadian federal government's support for the development of 4,000 MW of renewable energy capacity under its new ecoEnergy Renewable Initiative.

The first component of the initiative, ecoENERGY for Renewable Power, will invest $1.48 billion to boost Canada's supply of clean electricity from renewable sources such as wind, biomass, small hydro and ocean energy. A 10-year incentive program will be established to fund eligible projects to be constructed over the next four years, the representatives say. According to a statement released by the Canadian Wind Energy Association, the initiative will provide eligible wind energy projects with a production incentive payment of C$0.01 per kWh in their first 10 years of operation.

Gary Lunn, the Minister of Natural Resources who joined Harper at the announcement, says the initiative "will help make renewable sources of heat and electricity a more affordable and realistic choice for more Canadians. We expect to add enough clean renewable electricity to power about one million homes."

The second component, ecoENERGY for Renewable Heat, will provide more than $35 million in incentives and industry support to increase the adoption of clean renewable thermal technologies for water and space heating in buildings, such as solar air and hot water heating.

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