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 President 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 President 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 Chief 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 Chair 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 President 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 Incorporated 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 electrons." 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 involved." 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 megawatts." Paul Norris President 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 results." 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 Provost 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
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