Ontario's Long Term Energy Plan, Achieving Balance
("LTEP"), released by the Government of Ontario's
Ministry of Energy in December of 2013, reflects a strengthened
commitment to renewable energy. The government has announced a goal
of 20,000 MW of renewable energy power generation being online by
2025, which represents nearly half of Ontario's capacity.
The LTEP is guided by the five core principles of:
cost-effectiveness, reliability, clean energy, community
engagement, and conservation and demand management. The strongest
emphasis is placed on conservation, which is evident throughout the
LTEP, for example through plans to develop innovative technologies
such as energy storage within the renewable energy sector.
The feed-in tariff ("FIT") program
continues to be a priority for the government. The government plans
to make up to 300 MW of wind, 140 MW of solar, 50 MW of bioenergy
and 50 MW of hydroelectric capacity available for procurement in
2014. In 2015, the targets will be 300 MW of wind, 140 MW of solar,
50 MW of bioenergy and 45 MW of hydroelectricity. Any capacity that
is not procured will be reallocated for procurement for each
Ontario now has more than 2,300 MW of installed wind power
generation, and more than 900 MW of solar photovoltaic
("PV") electricity generation power
online to date. Going forward, wind power project developers should
be aware that municipalities will have a greater say in wind
development. Project proponents will therefore need strong
municipal support. The Independent Electricity System Operator
("IESO") will also be granted the
ability to set curtailment limits on wind energy generation when
the system does not require it.
The solar PV industry is likely to benefit from the intention
announced in the LTEP to examine the possibility for the microFIT
program to evolve from an energy generation purchasing program to a
net metering program, allowing individuals to offset the cost of
electricity by power generation. This is likely to create
heightened demand for solar PV systems, aided by the fact that the
average cost of a solar PV system is continuously decreasing.
Also likely to generate increased demand and potential for solar
PV systems is the government's intention to introduce
legislation that would completely eliminate the FIT program
domestic content requirements, announced in a news release on
December 11, 2013. The decision to eliminate the domestic content
requirements is a reflection of the strong position of the
industry. As stated in the news release, "strong growth in the
sector means the measure is no longer required".
A new competitive procurement process for renewable energy
projects larger than 500 kW is expected to launch in 2014.
The OPA shall report back to the Minister of Energy with a
proposed design for the Competitive Process by March 1, 2014, and
subject to a further direction, plan to post the draft Request for
Qualification for comment for the Competitive Process before the
end of the first quarter of 2014. The process will occur in
successive rounds to provide opportunity for a diverse set of
participants, and will place an emphasis on aboriginal
participation, electricity system need, and cost-efficiency. The
program demonstrates the shifting focus towards conservation
throughout the LTEP as it will consider proposals that integrate
energy storage with the renewable energy generation.
The LTEP reaffirms Ontario's commitment to renewable energy.
The demand for renewable energy continues to grow. Procurement
targets are being maintained, and innovation in the energy sector
such as energy storage is being supported. The emphasis placed on
conservation and taxpayer savings is likely to encourage hesitant
ratepayers to embrace renewable energy technology as a viable
alternative source of energy. The LTEP celebrates the growth of the
renewable energy industry, and the successful phasing-out of coal
energy. Through the LTEP, Ontario has demonstrated a lasting
commitment to renewable energy.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
Canada is a constitutional monarchy, a parliamentary democracy and a federation comprised of ten provinces and three territories. Canada's judiciary is independent of the legislative and executive branches of Government.
The Government of Alberta recently announced a number of policy changes that will impact the Alberta Electricity Market, composed of its generators, transmitters, distributors, retailers, electricity consumers and wholesale electricity market.
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).