It has only been a few days since prime minister-designate
Justin Trudeau's election win and we are still over a week away
from cabinet appointment announcements. It will be some time before
the new federal Liberal government's energy policy begins to
take shape. However, the Liberal
platform holds some clues as to what Ontario's energy
sector may expect to see in the near future.
Clean tech will also be specifically incorporated into the
existing scientific research and experimental development tax
credit to facilitate investment. Electricity storage technologies
and electrical car charging stations will be added to the list of
investments eligible for accelerated capital cost allowance.
In order to encourage private investment in green infrastructure
projects, the Liberals proposed the development of Green Bonds to support large- and
community-scale energy projects. The Green Bonds will fund projects
such as electric vehicle charging stations, transmission lines for
renewable energy, smart grid technology, the electrification of
transportation, building retrofits and clean power storage.
Just how much of these investments will be directed to Ontario
industries, organizations and projects will not be known until a
Minister of Finance is appointed and budget tabled.
Throughout the campaign, Mr. Trudeau refused to commit to specific emission
targets, stating that once elected he would work with the
provinces and territories to establish national targets. The
Liberals did promise to put a price on carbon and put funding in place
to allow provinces and territories to design and implement their
own carbon pricing policies. Mr. Trudeau also pledged to attend the
upcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Paris this December with
territorial and provincial leaders and to hold a First
Ministers' conference within 90 days thereafter to discuss a
national framework to combat climate change.
Ontario has already announced its plans to move forward with a
carbon cap and trade system tied to
Quebec's and California's existing cap and trade systems.
All three are members of the Western Climate Initiative (WCI), a
collaboration of a number of provinces and U.S. states working
together to implement emission trading policies to address climate
change at a regional level. British Columbia and Manitoba are
alsomembers of the WCI, but have not moved forward with their own
cap and trade plans. With the pledged federal political and
financial support, we can expect to see the WCI market grow.
Mr. Trudeau has not yet set a date for reconvening Parliament
and many of these policies will not be detailed or implemented
until a budget is passed. As well, the specifics of the Liberal
climate change plan are unknown at this point, awaiting
consultation with the territories and provinces. Of course,
promises made during an election campaign are not binding and we
may ultimately see changes in the days ahead from what was set out
in the platform. We will continue to monitor and report on these
developments and their impact on the energy sector in Ontario and
across the country.
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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.
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