Ontario announces 184 large-scale renewable energy projects

TORONTO, April 8 /CNW/ - More Ontario homes and businesses will soon be powered by green energy with the awarding of contract offers for almost 2,500 megawatts of renewable energy announced today by Ontario's Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, Brad Duguid. These projects, approved under the province's landmark Feed-in Tariff (FIT), are part of the largest green energy investment of its kind in Canadian history.

These projects are in addition to the 510 renewable energy contract offers totalling 112 megawatts (MW) approved last month.

"These projects are the latest accomplishments of the Green Energy Act which is making Ontario a place of destination for green energy development, manufacturing, and expertise." said Minister Duguid. "The investments generated by FIT will not only create green jobs, but will also build a coal-free legacy for future generations."

The 184 projects announced today will generate enough energy to power 600,000 homes. Located in communities across the province, the total 694 Feed-in Tariff (FIT) contract offers announced to date will create 20,000 direct and indirect green jobs and attract about $9 billion in private sector investment, as well as investment in new Ontario-based manufacturing.

"In six short months the Feed-in Tariff program has delivered strong results and has more than exceeded our expectations," said Ontario Power Authority CEO Colin Andersen.

Enabling community and aboriginal participation in renewable energy development is a key objective of the province's Green Energy Act. Thirty-six community and aboriginal projects will receive a first round FIT contract. These projects are located in communities throughout the province.

"I'm pleased to see aboriginal and local communities across Ontario as active participants in the green energy movement. Their leadership enhances Ontario's efforts to establish itself as a North American leader in renewable energy," said Minister Duguid.

Seventy-six of the approved projects are ground-mounted solar photovoltaic, 47 are on-shore wind and 46 are waterpower projects. There are also seven biogas, two biomass, four landfill gas, one roof top solar and one off-shore wind projects. Detailed information about the projects, including their locations, is available on the Ontario Power Authority's website at www.powerauthority.on.ca.

Significantly expanding the amount of renewable generation is a key part of the provincial government's strategy to address climate change by eliminating dirty coal-fired generation by the end of 2014. The FIT program's mandatory requirements for "made in Ontario" technologies and services also makes renewable generation a key part of the strategy to make the province North America's leader in green jobs and manufacturing.

Future transmission system expansion will open up capacity to accommodate more renewable projects. Projects that did not receive a first round FIT contract offer will now be put through what is called an Economic Connection Test (ECT) to identify transmission or distribution system expansion projects that support renewable generation and meet economic requirements. The first test will start in August/September. Renewable energy projects enabled by these expansions projects will be eligible for a FIT contract once work begins on the projects.

The Ontario Power Authority is responsible for ensuring a reliable, sustainable supply of electricity for Ontario. Its four key areas of focus are: planning the power system for the long term, leading and co-ordinating conservation initiatives across the province, ensuring development of needed generation resources, and supporting the continued evolution of the electricity sector.

Additional quotes related to today's announcement can be found on the Feed-in Tariff website.

To view a backgrounder on Ontario's Feed-in Tariff Program, go to http://files.newswire.ca/792/Apr_8.doc.

                           FIT Announcement Quotes

    Association of Power Producers of Ontario (APPrO)

    "The FIT was intended to spur renewable generation development and APPrO
    is very pleased that the OPA working with Hydro One has been able to
    award as many FIT contracts as announced today. The next big challenge is
    to address the capacity constraints in our transmission system in order
    to realize the full potential for renewable generation in Ontario."

    Dave Butters
    President & CEO
    Association of Powers Producers of Ontario
    Tel: 416-322-6549

    Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA)

    "CanSIA and it members are overwhelmed by today's announcement which
    underlines the commitment of the McGuinty government to be a global
    leader in terms of renewable energy and it will cement Ontario's place as
    a leading solar jurisdiction. We also want to acknowledge the hard work
    of the Ontario Power Authority and its partners for actually doing all
    the groundwork that has made today possible."

    Elizabeth A. McDonald
    Canadian Solar Industries Association
    Tel: 1-613-736-9077

    Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA)

    "CanWEA applauds the government of Ontario and the Ontario Power
    Authority on this significant first step in realizing the huge potential
    under Ontario's Green Energy Act," said Robert Hornung, president of
    CanWEA. "Capturing more of Ontario's wind energy resource will require a
    continued commitment to open and fair access to the Feed in Tariff, as
    well as accelerated investment in new transmission infrastructure."

    Robert Hornung
    Canadian Wind Energy Association
    Tel: 1-800-922-6932

    Chippewas of Georgina Island

    "Georgina Island First Nation is delighted that its proposed 20 megawatt
    wind farm has received a feed-in-tariff (FIT) contract offer from the
    Ontario Power Authority. The people of Georgina Island First Nation have
    been working on this project for several years so it is particularly
    gratifying to be among the initial group of sixteen First Nations
    projects approved under the new Green Energy Act introduced by the
    Ontario Government. We are proud to add renewable green energy generation
    to our heritage of environmental responsibility."

    Donna BigCanoe
    Chippewas of Georgina Island
    Tel: 1-705-437-1337

    Community Power Fund

    "This is exciting news for Ontario's community power sector. Today's
    announcement will allow Ontarians to directly share the financial returns
    from renewable energy investments made in our province. Community power
    projects encourage local ownership and result in more returns flowing
    into the community."

    Brent Kopperson
    Community Power Fund
    Tel: 416-977-3154

    Durham College

    "The provincial government's Feed in Tariff program has proven to be an
    excellent opportunity for Durham College to demonstrate to our students
    through a living lab environment how we can produce clean energy at our
    Whitby campus and then make it available for the grid," said Durham
    College President Don Lovisa. "The first-hand demonstration of this
    unique program also reinforces for our students the increasing
    opportunities for careers in the clean-energy sector."

    Don Lovisa
    Durham College
    Tel: 1-905-721-3300

    Electricity Distributors Association (EDA)

    "Ontario's electricity distributors, in co-operation with the Ontario
    Power Authority, are proud to be a part of the expansion of renewable
    energy and supporting the development of sustainable communities in
    Ontario. Distributors are playing a primary role in providing guidance
    and assistance to those who want to engage and connect FIT and microFIT
    projects to the power grid. With new opportunities under the Green Energy
    Act some electricity distributors are now even spearheading new FIT
    projects of their own within their service territories."

    Charlie Macaluso
    President and Chief Executive Officer
    Electricity Distributors Association
    Tel: 1-905-265-5300

    Environmental Defence

    "Watch out Germany and Denmark, Ontario is poised to become a new world
    leader in renewable energy. The contracts announced today position
    Ontario to cash in on the green energy economy, generating new jobs and
    encouraging investment in the province. Contracts to community and
    aboriginal owned projects will ensure that Ontarians have an opportunity
    to realize the financial benefits of the Green Energy and Green Economy
    Act for decades to come."

    Dr. Rick Smith
    Executive Director
    Environmental Defence
    (member of the Green Energy Act Alliance)
    Tel: 416-323-9521

    Horizon Utilities

    "Thanks to the critical incentive provided through the Feed-In Tariff
    program, Horizon Energy Solutions Incorporated will harness the sun from
    the rooftops of the Golden Horseshoe to create Ontario's Solar
    Sunbelt(TM). We'll help to generate a sustainable source of power with
    cleaner air to breathe. Without the far-sighted policy of the government,
    the commercial rollout of a sustainable green energy program and green
    economy would remain a dream. The program provides both a ready market
    and a fee structure that will nurture solar power to the point that it
    will be commercially viable through economies of scale."

    Max Cananzi
    Chief Executive Officer
    Horizon Holdings, Horizon Utilities, Horizon Energy Solutions
    Tel: 1-905-522-9200

    MaRS Discovery District

    "The size of today's announcement shows the depth of interest the Green
    Energy Act is creating in the renewable energy sector. It's another
    example that the Act puts Ontario out front in North America when it
    comes to renewable energy production. The Act's Feed-In Tariff is clearly
    effective at moving capital into the sector, and generating lots of green

    Tom Rand
    Practice Lead, Cleantech and Physical Science
    Venture Group, MaRS
    MaRS Discovery District
    Tel: 416-673-8416

    Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (OSEA)

    "This is great news for both the province and the planet. The high number
    of contracts awarded to communities clearly indicates that people see the
    opportunities to financially benefit from generating renewable energy,
    while meeting their moral obligation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
    and pollution. Communities that own the wind turbines, solar panels, or
    hydro dams have more control over them and so are best able to address
    any concerns. It is clear from the announcement today that there is wide-
    spread acceptance of renewable energy, especially when local people are

    Kristopher Stevens
    Executive Director
    Ontario Sustainable Energy Association
    Tel: 416-977-4441

    Ontario Waterpower Association (OWA)

    "Today's announcement is a modest yet important first step in realizing
    Ontario's significant untapped waterpower potential", said Paul Norris,
    President of the Ontario Waterpower Association. "Expediting enabling
    transmission and reducing regulatory burden will be key to increasing the
    contribution of flexible waterpower from hundreds to thousands of new

    Paul Norris
    Ontario Waterpower Association
    Tel: 1-705-743-1500

    The Pembina Institute

    "With the Green Energy and Economy Act, Ontario has distinguished itself
    as a renewable energy leader, not only in Canada but in North America.
    Today's announcement shows how quickly good policy leads to real

    Tim Weis
    Director, Renewable Energy and Efficiency
    The Pembina Institute
    Tel: 416-644-1016

    St. Lawrence College

    "St Lawrence College applauds the Ontario government's leadership in
    advancing renewable energy. The Green Energy Act and the Feed-In-Tariff
    (FIT) program have been particularly effective and clearly have been a
    tremendous catalyst for business growth and development. St Lawrence is
    the leading college in Ontario and, in fact, in Canada in renewable
    energy programming. We have been able to respond quickly in meeting the
    demand for skilled, knowledgeable workers, as the many related industries
    continue to grow. Most certainly the stimulus and incentive that comes
    from the FIT program has accelerated not only our curriculum development
    and enrolment growth in our programs, but has led us to forge a number of
    new partnerships and even research endeavours that complement our work in
    the area of renewable energy. At present St Lawrence College offers 3
    full-time programs in the area of renewable energy, which are Energy
    Systems Engineering Technician & Technologist, and Wind Turbine
    Technician and a Geothermal Engineering Technician program is currently
    under development. We also offer a host of continuing education and
    contract training courses. "Energy House", a renewable energy research
    and demonstration facility, is a key part of our programming and
    community outreach, and we are also leading a national project in solar
    curriculum development. The government of Ontario's vision and leadership
    is to be complimented, and as partners in prosperity for our province, St
    Lawrence College also remains committed to developing the skilled work
    force to advance and support these initiatives."

    Chris Whitaker
    President & CEO
    St. Lawrence College
    Tel: 1-613-544-5400

    University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT)

    "The University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) is a leader in
    green energy research and innovation," said Richard Marceau, provost,
    "our students and faculty fully appreciate the enormous benefits these
    energy sources offer in promoting use of new technologies, research and
    strategies to build a sustainable, reliable, cleaner supply of power for
    our society. The FIT program is an excellent tool, well-positioned to
    catalyze the generation of green energies in our province."

    Richard Marceau
    University of Ontario Institute of Technology
    Tel: 1-905-721-8668

    University of Waterloo

    "Our partnership with the province and resulting investment in new
    infrastructure through KIP, as well as continued enhancement of our
    programs in sustainable and renewable energy, has positioned Waterloo and
    the province as a central hub for green energy research. Our Waterloo
    Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE), School of Environment,
    Enterprise and Development (SEED), plus programs in environment and
    resource studies and planning, are producing a new generation of
    graduates and leaders in green energy."

    Deep Saini
    Dean of the Faculty of Environment
    University of Waterloo
    Tel: 1-519-888-4567

SOURCE Ontario Power Authority

For further information: For further information: Media Contacts: Tim Butters, Ontario Power Authority, (416) 969-6307; Amy Tang, Office of the Honourable Brad Duguid, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, (416) 327-6747

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