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Quebec's wind-power plans take a blow

Ontario's recently implemented Green Energy Act is taking some of the wind out of Quebec's claim that it is the leading promoter of wind energy in Canada, a seminar on supply-chain opportunities in the sector heard yesterday. Last month, Ontario became the first jurisdiction in North America to have a so-called feed-in tariff, which pays producers of green energy - including solar and wind - a guaranteed premium for the power they produce.

Must contend with Ontario law that guarantees premiums to producers

Ontario's recently implemented Green Energy Act is taking some of the wind out of Quebec's claim that it is the leading promoter of wind energy in Canada, a seminar on supply-chain opportunities in the sector heard yesterday.

Last month, Ontario became the first jurisdiction in North America to have a so-called feed-in tariff, which pays producers of green energy - including solar and wind - a guaranteed premium for the power they produce.

"Ontario has really come on strong," said David Timm, vice-president (strategic affairs) for AIM PowerGen Corp., the Toronto-based wind developer recently purchased by British-based renewable energy giant International Power PLC. "Ontario has gone from 'worst to first' ... to quote Ontario's energy minister."

The program, which is to pay developers of large onshore wind projects 13.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, removes some risk for wind-farm developers and lessens the likelihood of boom-and-bust cycles, Timm and others at the conference said.

Ontario's new system "represents immediate opportunity, whereas Quebec represents future opportunity," said Daniel... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Must contend with Ontario law that guarantees premiums to producers

Ontario's recently implemented Green Energy Act is taking some of the wind out of Quebec's claim that it is the leading promoter of wind energy in Canada, a seminar on supply-chain opportunities in the sector heard yesterday.

Last month, Ontario became the first jurisdiction in North America to have a so-called feed-in tariff, which pays producers of green energy - including solar and wind - a guaranteed premium for the power they produce.

"Ontario has really come on strong," said David Timm, vice-president (strategic affairs) for AIM PowerGen Corp., the Toronto-based wind developer recently purchased by British-based renewable energy giant International Power PLC. "Ontario has gone from 'worst to first' ... to quote Ontario's energy minister."

The program, which is to pay developers of large onshore wind projects 13.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, removes some risk for wind-farm developers and lessens the likelihood of boom-and-bust cycles, Timm and others at the conference said.

Ontario's new system "represents immediate opportunity, whereas Quebec represents future opportunity," said Daniel Charette, vice-president of Bromont-based AAER Inc., Canada's only turbine manufacturer.

There is less lag time between preparing and pricing a development and implementing the project, and less time for unforeseen events like financial crises, he said.

AAER opened corporate offices in Toronto last month.

Quebec, which relies on competitive tendering, has approved two sets of bids. In May 2008, Premier Jean Charest okayed 15 bids for $5.5 billion in wind projects that would provide about 2,000 megawatts by 2015. The chosen developers are to be paid 8. 7 cents per kilowatt-hour. The earlier program was for 1,000 megawatts.

Both Quebec and Ontario have local-content requirements in a bid to create jobs and new businesses around the emerging energy sector.

Wind farm developers in Quebec and the companies that do - or want to - supply parts for the massive wind turbines or provide services to the often remote wind farms are concerned that they will invest in Quebec only to find that after 2015, there won't be other major projects.

The wind industry is looking for long-term scenarios, said Robert Hornung, president of the Canadian Wind Energy Association.

Ontario's system - which, in effect, tells qualified developers that if they can provide power at a certain price, the province will take it - is the one preferred by industry, Hornung said.

The conference ends today.


Source: http://www.montrealgazette....

NOV 10 2009
https://www.windaction.org/posts/23047-quebec-s-wind-power-plans-take-a-blow
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