Ontario Continues to Strengthen Proposed Green Energy Act



    
    McGuinty Government Signals Amendments and Policy Changes to Green Energy
    Plan
    

    TORONTO, April 24 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    Ontarians have made hundreds of constructive suggestions to make the
proposed Green Energy Act even more effective in creating a greener economy
for Ontario. After completing a series of hearings in communities across the
province, the Legislature's Standing Committee on General Government is set to
consider the proposed Green Energy Act in a detailed clause by clause review.
    George Smitherman, Deputy Premier and Minister of Energy and
Infrastructure, welcomes the public's interest in the proposed legislation.
Below are highlights of the government's proposed amendments and policy
development to respond to a number of issues raised at the Standing Committee,
in legislative debate or when the bill was posted on Ontario's Environmental
Registry.

    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    TOPICS            AMENDMENTS                    POLICY DEVELOPMENT
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Home Energy   The buyer can opt out if the  Regulations will focus
    Audits        audit is not desired (eg.     initiative on principal
                  major renovations or          residences, single family
                  demolition contemplated)      homes.

                                                The audit will be
                                                transferable so that retrofit
                                                grants can be accessed by
                                                buyers.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Community     Creating a new section that   A uniform process for
    Consultation  clearly ensures               proponent consultation with
    and           administration of the GEA     municipalities on site
    Municipal     is done in such a way as to   requirements and local
    Assistance    promote community             infrastructure, as part of
                  consultation.                 the renewable energy
                                                approvals process.

                                                Establish a working group
                                                involving Ministries of
                                                Municipal Affairs and
                                                Housing, Environment, Natural
                                                Resources, Energy and
                                                Infrastructure, and the
                                                Association of Municipalities
                                                of Ontario.

                                                Establish a provincial
                                                program to ensure
                                                municipalities can recover
                                                costs associated with
                                                renewable energy projects.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Community                                   Establish a provincial
    and                                         Aboriginal program to ensure
    Aboriginal                                  costs associated with
    Assistance                                  renewable energy projects can
                                                be recovered.

                                                Establish a program to ensure
                                                project costs associated with
                                                community renewable energy
                                                projects can be recovered.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Health        Amending grounds for appeal   The Ministry of the
    Concerns      under the Environmental       Environment to establish and
                  Protection Act to protect     fund an academic research
                  against serious health        chair to examine potential
                  effects.                      public health effects of
                                                renewable energy projects.

                                                Ongoing review of health and
                                                scientific research by the
                                                Ministry of the Environment
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Setbacks                                    Continued consultation by the
                                                Ministry of Environment to
                                                establish province-wide
                                                minimum setback standards and
                                                regulations regarding
                                                renewable energy projects
                                                (excluding some forms of
                                                renewable energy such as
                                                rooftop solar) with regard to
                                                human health, noise, and low
                                                frequency vibration.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Enforcement   Inspection and search
                  provisions related to home
                  energy audits and minimum
                  energy efficiency standards
                  for appliances and products
                  will be eliminated.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Mandating     New section which clearly     Domestic content levels will
    Domestic      establishes the government's  be established consistent
    Content       commitment to domestic        with trade agreements and
                  content.                      consultation with relevant
                                                sectors
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Minister's    Clarify that procurement
    Directive     directives under the new
    Powers        directive authority focus
                  only on renewable energy,
                  energy efficiency and
                  conservation.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Energy                                      Reviewing future policy
    Procurement                                 opportunities to address
                                                energy technologies including
                                                geothermal, solar thermal,
                                                combined heat and power and
                                                small scale wind.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Stray                                       Minister to direct the
    Voltage                                     Ontario Energy Board to
                                                manage and address issues
                                                related to stray voltage.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Environmental  Ensuring the ECO can meet    Ensuring the information and
    Commissioner   the responsibilities         documentation related
    of Ontario     outlined in the GEA.         to the development of
                                                conservation targets is
                                                transparent and publicly
                                                available.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    QUOTES

    "We're aiming to be the North American leader on renewable energy and
conservation. The proposed Green Energy Act is a historic piece of legislation
for Ontario and, if passed, is going to affect all of us for many years to
come."
    - George Smitherman, Deputy Premier and Minister of Energy &
Infrastructure

    "The committee process is a very important way to get public feedback on
the proposed Green Energy Act. We heard from all sides of the debate and we're
confident that, at the end of the day, the Committee's recommendations will
make this an even better bill. I am very proud to work with a Minister and be
part of a government that listens and responds."
    - Laurel Broten, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Energy and
Infrastructure

    
    QUICK FACTS:

    -   The Standing Committee on General Government held hearings in
        Toronto, Sault Ste. Marie, London and Ottawa Ontario as it considered
        the proposed Green Energy Act. Approximately 130 presentations were
        made, as well as over 300 written submissions.
    -   Over 600 comments on the proposed Green Energy Act were received in
        response to a posting of the Bill on Ontario's Environmental
        Registry.

    LEARN MORE

    For more information on the Green Energy Act, visit:
    The Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure at www.ontario.ca/greenenergy

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                      ontario.ca/energy-news
                                                      Disponible en français
    





For further information:

For further information: Amy Tang, Minister's Office, (416) 327-6747;
Eric Pelletier, Communications Branch, (416) 325-1810

Organization Profile

Ontario Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

More on this organization

Green News

More on this organization


Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890