Canada: This One's Got Legs: The Ontario Climate Change Solutions Deployment Corporation

On February 17, 2017, the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change ("MOECC") took another step toward implementing the goals in the Ontario Climate Change Action Plan ("CCAP"). By filing the Ontario Climate Change Solutions Deployment Corporation regulation (the "regulation"), the MOECC created a new non-share capital corporation to stimulate the development of clean technology and assist with reducing barriers that may inhibit the implementation of the CCAP and its goals.

What you need to know

The corporation, called the Ontario Climate Change Solutions Deployment Corporation ("OCCSDC"), was designed to further the provincial deployment of clean technology for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It is tasked with meeting this broad purpose by:

  • providing information;
  • engaging in marketing;
  • providing services and arranging for others to be provided with services;
  • providing incentives and engaging in financing activities;
  • stimulating private sector financing; and
  • researching market barriers inhibiting the deployment of clean technology.

Interestingly, research and development are expressly excluded from the scope of the duties of the OCCSDC.

The regulation places a focus on developing programs that will maximize absolute greenhouse gas reductions and stimulate the use of clean technology by low-income households.  Additional programs will be directed at:

  • switching from using fossil fuels to other sources of energy;
  • energy storage (of various forms);
  • renewable energy;
  • retrofitting existing structures to reduce or eliminate greenhouse gas emissions;
  • stimulating economies of scale in technology;
  • stimulating private sector financing; and
  • stimulating the construction of buildings that significantly exceed provincial energy efficiency requirements (think net-zero and net-positive construction).

The corporation will be funded in part by the proceeds of Ontario's cap and trade program, which the Ontario Government estimates to be approximately $2 billion per year.

Why is this important?

Since the closure of Ontario's coal power plants in 2014 (an event which went generally unnoticed by both the press and the general public), the province's mighty electric power system has become one of the least carbon reliant in the world.  To reduce its GHG footprint further, Ontario must now look to sectors outside of the electricity sector.  Under Ontario's CCAP, we see new clean-tech business opportunities arising in transportation, built infrastructure (buildings and homes), land use planning, commercial industry, First Nations Communities, agriculture and the MUSH sector.  The OCCSDC is intended to work in tandem with the CCAP to drive change and stimulate economic opportunities.

Ontario has the tremendous luxury of not being the first jurisdiction in the world to set up a green bank.  The UK, Japan, Australia and Malaysia have all cut a path through the forest.  Over the past nine years in the U.S., several green banks have been set up at the state level. Of these, New York, California, Hawaii and Connecticut provide excellent examples.  Additionally, the concept of the green bank is essentially similar to that of an export development bank – something Ontario businesses are accustomed to working with at the federal level.  The key element of a green bank is that it uses public funds, tailored credit requirements and moderately innovative financing techniques to lever private sector finance and commercial innovation capacity in order to achieve specific policy goals.  With Ontario's OCCSDC the focus will be – as it should be – on commercially viable technologies rather than research or early-stage innovation.  

The best green banks bring global knowledge and understanding to local markets, use their strategic position to develop market capacity where the private sector would otherwise be unable to, use credit-enhancement, co-investment, securitization and other financing tools to diffuse risk, create scale and mitigate private sector project risk.  Ontario's OCCSDC appears poised to do most of this and, in addition, it also promises to provide direct small-scale incentives and financing to consumers and to businesses to drive practical and attitudinal change.

Where are the opportunities?

The key is to remember that the OCCSDC is intended to work in tandem with the CCAP to drive change and stimulate economic opportunities.  These mechanisms provide a "stick and carrot" approach.  The other thing to remember is, as several have already said, this is a big deal.  We see it impacting most of the economy, including the following key sectors and industries:

  • Building and construction industries
  • Food manufacturing and processing
  • Property development and management industries
  • District heating and cooling companies
  • Urban planners
  • High-emitting sectors, including cement, lime, forestry and steel industries
  • First Nations communities and governments
  • Regional governments
  • Automobile manufacturers
  • Municipalities
  • Local distribution companies
  • Renewable fuels producers
  • Urban transportation systems
  • Real estate businesses
  • Hospitals
  • Universities and colleges
  • School boards
  • Natural gas sector participants

In Transportation, for instance, we see the combination of the CCAP and the OCCSDC:

  • creating support to enhance the availability and use of lower-carbon fuel by funding fuel distributors for high-blend sustainable biofuels and infrastructure upgrades;
  • supporting the re-use of agricultural and food waste as a source of methane fuel;
  • generally increasing the distribution and use of electric vehicles and increasing charging-station infrastructure in the province;
  • supporting expanded cycling infrastructure in urban areas and along roadways;
  • incentivizing low-carbon commercial vehicle solutions; and
  • accelerating the construction of regional light rail systems.

In Built Infrastructure, we expect to see:

  • a complete retrofit Ontario's aging social housing infrastructure;
  • encouragement for homeowners to purchase or build Net Zero Carbon Emission homes through providing incentives and rebates;
  • encouragement of the installation of low-carbon technology in existing homes;
  • funds to upgrade and retrofit colleges, universities, hospitals and schools (a vast undertaking when considering the scale and age of this infrastructure);
  • "energy audits" before new and existing single-family homes may be listed for sale; and
  • low-carbon content requirements for natural gas, and encouraging more efficient use of natural gas in industrial, transportation and building sectors.

In the Industrial Sector, we expect to see:

  • aassistance for industries and businesses to transition to and adopt low-carbon technologies and manufacturing solutions, to reduce net methane output from industrial processes and to select low GHG production inputs;
  • focus on high-emitting sectors, such as the cement, steel, and lime production industries;
  • focus on the province's gigantic food and beverage-processing sector to assist in expanding use of emissions-reducing processing technologies;
  • transitional assistance to retrofit agricultural facilities, including new greenhouses and grain dryers and improved storage, cold storage and transportation facilities.

For First Nations Communities, expect

  • collaboration with communities to facilitate transitioning to low-carbon, non-fossil fuel energy;
  • renewed efforts to connect remote communities to provincial electricity grid;
  • support to reduce reliance on diesel fuel and enable community microgrid use of renewable energy sources;
  • low-carbon job training opportunities and training partnerships; and
  • enhanced strategic investment opportunities for Band Councils in projects outside of the community.

For Municipalities, expect:

  • support for community energy mapping - integrating gas, electricity, heating and cooling, water, transportation, waste consumption and building data into a single platform;
  • support to implement Transportation Demand Management Plans;
  • requirements for electric vehicle charging stations in surface lots;
  • requirements for "Green Development Standards" –reducing motorized vehicle use and supporting sustainable community development; and
  • support for climate change mitigation strategies in municipal official plans.

What comes next?

The Board of the OCCSDC is currently being assembled.  After this happens, it will take time for programs to be developed and launched.  As well, key details on the operation of the new corporation – including reporting obligations, how it will interact with existing and emerging federal and provincial bodies such as the Ontario Energy Board and the emerging federal infrastructure bank – will need to be finalized and revealed.  That being said, there is significant pressure on the province to get things underway. 

Given the grave, global impact of carbon and other GHG emissions and the very diffuse nature of the GHG problem for Ontario, the OCCSDC and its parent policy, the CCAP, promise to drive gradual and fundamental change and to create substantial economic opportunities across many sectors.  As with green banks elsewhere, early renditions are likely to have flaws and there will undoubtedly be missteps.  That being said, considering the sums involved and given the experience seen in other jurisdictions, the launch of the OCCSDC will create economic growth and innovation opportunity and, ultimately, should help Ontario meet its GHG objective.  This one's, as the saying goes, got legs.

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.

Authors
Events from this Firm
14 Sep 2017, Seminar, Birmingham, UK

Has Cloud replaced traditional outsourcing models? We will compare cloud to outsourcing, consider whether they have effectively become the same thing for many solutions and assess some of the advantages and disadvantages of each model.

18 Sep 2017, Seminar, London, UK

Our annual event as part of the London Design Festival is now in its fifth year. We would be delighted if you are able to join us again.

21 Sep 2017, Seminar, London, UK

Has Cloud replaced traditional outsourcing models? We will compare cloud to outsourcing, consider whether they have effectively become the same thing for many solutions and assess some of the advantages and disadvantages of each model.

 
In association with
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
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).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

Disclaimer

Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

Registration

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.