Library filed under Energy Policy from Canada
A U.S. wind power developer that is seeking $653-million in damages under a NAFTA challenge accuses the government of Ontario of manipulating Green Energy Act rules to benefit the interests of Liberal-connected firms. ...The court filing, recently made public in the case that pits Mesa Power, a Texas-based developer owned by U.S. financier T. Boone Pickens, against the government, alleges Ontario replaced “transparent” criteria for the selection of energy projects with “political favoritism, cronyism and local preference.”
Anyone who has studied the Ontario Liberal government’s failed experiment with wind power knows what a financial and social catastrophe it has been.
The New Democratic Party (NDP) and Progressive Conservatives (PCs) – have differing views with regard to renewable energy. NDP leaders only support community wind power, and the PCs vehemently oppose all types of renewable energy and have used wind energy to club the ruling party. ...“If the Conservatives win, renewable energy is toast in Ontario,” predicts Kourtoff.
Wind turbine opponents say they're feeling encouraged by Lambton County council's decision to join the chorus of Ontario municipalities declaring themselves unwilling hosts for wind farms. County councillors passed a motion Feb. 12 joining approximately 80 communities making the declaration.
Thirty-six percent of respondents feel the Green Energy Act or environmental sustainability is a major worry for those living in the province's country lands.
In 2012, the Council for Clean and Reliable Electricity published a paper stating that Ontario consumers subsidized out-of-province electricity buyers to the tune of $1.2 billion over the previous three years. While it costs 8.55 cents a kilowatt hour to produce electricity in Ontario, excess power was sold to five neighbouring jurisdictions — Michigan. New York, Minnesota, Manitoba and Quebec — for 2.65 cents/kwh, Tabuns said.
To understand how much the Liberals miscalculated, it’s worth looking at another report that preceded this one. Prepared for influential clients in the energy industry by global consulting firm IHS-CERA, the title of this private study says it all: “Too Much, Too Fast — The Pace of Greening the Ontario Power System.” It treats our wind turbines as a case study on how greening the power system can plunge it into the red. A cautionary tale for international clients, the report would have been essential reading for provincial energy planners as they looked for the light at the end of our wind tunnel:
The Ontario government is refusing to hear testimony from experts on noise and safety in an ongoing Environmental Review Tribunal, according to motions presented to the appellant. Last week, the Environment ministry and power developer NextEra filed motions to deny testimony from witnesses at an appeal launched by Esther Wrightman, a citizen of the Middlesex area. The ministry and developer are objecting to testimony from medical doctors, a professional engineer with expertise in noise measurement, an acoustician with knowledge of the effect of environmental noise and infrasound on human health, and real estate appraisers.
Premier Kathleen Wynne admitted Tuesday that the Liberal government's moves to cut funding to the horse racing industry and allow industrial wind turbines to dot the landscape may not have been the right ones for rural Ontario. ...The premier was greeted by anti-wind power protesters as she rode a float in the opening parade at the huge agricultural fair.
From Germany to Spain and Ontario to British Columbia, taxpayers are waking up to the fact that their power bills are going straight up. A major reason? Poorly thought out - some would say hopelessly naive - energy policies that encouraged an explosion of highly subsidized solar, wind, biomass and hydro projects, all in the name of saving the planet from evil fossil fuels. ...in some cases, these policies have led to an increase in carbon emissions.
Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli says the system operator can now order wind producers not to generate power, and will pay them — just as it pays Bruce nuclear — not to produce electricity when it’s not needed.
Once the darling of the energy world, CBC News reporter Robert Jones reports that wind turbines in New Brunswick are expensive, unreliable and failing to meet production targets every year since coming online in the years 2008 to 2012. Duration: 1 minute 57 seconds
Production problems aren't new. NB Power documents show the utility has failed to receive expected amounts of wind power every year since the first turbines came online in 2008 and now routinely budgets to receive less from the farms than they are supposed to produce. ...Currently, New Brunswick has 113 commercial windmills grouped in three separate locations, all of them installed between 2008 and 2010.
Martine Holmsen, manager of communications for IESO, said wind power would make its biggest contribution to the grid during winter and the shoulder seasons. But on Thursday morning (demand and generation vary hour to hour) wind at 62 megawatts (MW) was producing 0.26% of demand of 23,210.
The fees range from posting $100,000 performance bond for each turbine during the 20 year projected life of the machines, to $50,000 deposit for a peer review of reports generated in the renewable energy application process. Other security deposits include $50,000 for use of a municipal roadway by heavy equipment during installation and maintenance of the turbines.
Because wind is so inefficient, the only way to make it economically viable is to do what the Liberals have done. They're forcing us to pay inflated prices for it on our hydro bills, for 20 years, and forcing us to buy wind power first, even though we don't need it, because Ontario has an energy surplus, due to its beleaguered manufacturing sector. This means we dump less expensive (and "green") hydro power, for example, or sell it at a loss to Quebec or the U.S., to pay for wind.
With the bulk of Ontario's baseload electricity capacity coming from emissions-free nuclear power, commissioning massive amounts of wind and solar energy at guaranteed sky-high rates was a dubious idea from the get-go. With energy surpluses galore, idling nuclear reactors so an overloaded electricity grid can accommodate intermittently produced renewable energy is costing Ontario dearly as it exports unneeded wind power at a fraction of what it pays for it.
"We have always known that this was an imaginary energy plan dreamed up by the Liberal team. What is so vile about their plan is that it has more than doubled our hydro rates, cost us billions in offloading of surplus power to our neighbours, and shut down manufacturing and jobs across the province."
Anxious to put a good face on their climb down on green energy, the Liberals touted a so-called $24 per year saving on the average hydro bill as a result of the fact they will now be spending $3.7 billion less of our money on green energy. Your hydro rate isn't going to drop by $24 compared to what it is now. All it means is that, theoretically, going forward, your bill will be $24 less than the even higher number it would have been under the original Samsung deal.
The province's change of heart is partly a response to the backlash over that arrangement - which made electricity bills more expensive ...It is also the latest sign of turbulence in the green-energy industry after the global recession reduced the need for power and an uncertain economy made less costly conventional electricity more attractive than pricey renewables.