As of January 4, 2012, Ontario has amended regulations under the
Assessment Act to clarify the property tax treatment of
solar, wind and biogas projects in the province. As detailed below,
the tax treatment depends on the location of the project and the
nature of the person who will be generating electricity, with
special rules applying to wind turbine towers and farm biogas
1) Rooftop projects
The assessment and tax classification of a property or building
will not change as a result of the installation of a rooftop
2) Ground mounted projects
As detailed below, the changes distinguish between projects
where the generation is conducted by:
corporate power producers (i.e., entities that are in the
business of developing, owning and operating projects); and
persons other than corporate power producers (i.e., power
generation is secondary to the primary use of the property).
In drawing the distinction, the emphasis appears to be on the
nature of the person operating the facility, not of the person
owning the land. The distinction may therefore be particularly
relevant in situations where a corporate power producer is merely a
tenant on land. Parties who are negotiating leases for ground
mounted renewable projects should therefore continue to take care
to allocate the risk of incremental property tax burdens.
a) Corporate power producers
All land, buildings and structures used for electricity
generation are taxed at the industrial rate. Presumably, where a
project occupies only part of a property, the assessment and
classification of those parts of the property not used by the
project will remain unchanged as a result of the project.
b) Persons other than corporate power producers
For ground-mounted projects not undertaken by corporate power
producers, the tax treatment will depend on the size of the
Small-size projects with a generation capacity up to 10
kW will not experience an increase in assessment or a
change in tax classification.
Medium-size projects with a generation capacity over 10
kW and up to 500 kW will be taxed based on the surrounding
land use (e.g. residential, farm, multi-residential,
Large-size projects with a generation capacity over 500
kW will be taxed based on the surrounding land use for the
proportion of assessment up to 500 kW, and at the industrial rate
for the proportion over 500 kW.
3) Wind turbine towers
Wind turbine towers will continue to be assessed at $40,000 per
MW of installed capacity, unless they are rooftop mounted or the
capacity of the installation is 10 kW or less.
4) Farm biogas projects
Anaerobic digestion facilities of any size that are located on a
farm and are operated by the farmer will be taxed at the farm
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In Bank of Montreal v Bumper Development Corporation Ltd, 2016 ABQB 363, the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench enforced the "immediate replacement" provision in the Canadian Association of Petroleum Landmen 2007 Operating Procedure...
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