On April 25, 2016, Ontario's Independent Electricity System
Operator (IESO) issued a Notice indicating that it will temporarily
stop accepting applications to the microFIT program (version 3.3),
effective immediately. The stated reason is "to protect the
integrity of the microFIT program and consumers." In that
regard, the IESO notes that a number of "irregular and
incomplete applications have been discovered in the last few
Although new applications to microFIT are being suspended, that
does not mean that the program is done. As announced earlier by the IESO, a new version
of microFIT (version 4.0) will be launched in mid-2016. However, as
discussed below, it appears that microFIT will not be offered
beyond the end of next year.
A new fuel type/price category will be created for solar
photovoltaic (PV) rooftop applications that are 6 kilowatts (kW) or
smaller. The current 2016 price for solar PV rooftop will apply to
projects larger than 6 kW.
In-series metering will be allowed if permitted by the local
Projects will be required to be connected within 180 days of
receiving an Application Approval Notice.
Requirement for all applicants to provide a signed and
notarized declaration confirming they have access to their My
microFIT Homepage, understand the microFIT rules and other aspects
of the program.
According to the IESO, all microFIT version 3.3 applications
that do not receive an Application Approval Notice by the time
version 4.0 is released will be terminated. Applicants who want to
continue to be considered for a microFIT contract will be required
to submit a new application under version 4.0.
In the longer term, the microFIT program is to be phased out or
discontinued. As we discussed in an earlier post, the Minister of Energy recently issued a
Directive about future renewable energy
procurements. That Document indicates the following (at section
As contemplated in the 2013 LTEP, the Ministry is currently
working with local distribution companies, industry partners, the
IESO and the Ontario Energy Board to develop a proposal, to be
posted for public comment in 2016, to transition the microFIT
program to a net metering initiative. Given this transition, the
IESO shall cease accepting applications under the microFIT program
by December 31, 2017. The 2017 microFIT procurement shall have a
target of up to 50 MW.
Whether this Directive means that microFIT version 4.0 will be
the final iteration of the microFIT program is not clear. What is
clear, though, is that a new approach to small-scale procurement
will be open for discussion next year.
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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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