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Spring election could reset Ontario renewables

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.

Many industry watchers anticipate a spring election in Ontario, which depending on the outcome, could have a dramatic impact on the future of renewable energy in the province.

The ruling government in Ontario, the Liberal Party, rules by a minority and, therefore, must count on the support of one of the opposition parties to pass major legislation. A failure to pass a major piece of legislation would be equivalent to a non-confidence motion and likely result in a general election that would not otherwise be due until 2015.

Although the Liberal Party ushered in the Green Energy Act in 2009, many of the chief architects of the act are no longer in power. And current Premier Kathleen Wynne has carefully moved to deflate much of the controversy created by the landmark legislation. Still, Ontarians equate renewable energy with the Liberal Party. Further exacerbating matters is that the party was responsible for the relocation of two Ontario gas plants, the cost of which was dramatically understated to the public.

Although the Liberal Party ushered in the Green Energy Act in 2009, many of the chief architects of the act are no longer in power. And current Premier Kathleen Wynne has carefully moved to deflate much of the controversy created by the landmark legislation. Still, Ontarians equate renewable energy with the Liberal Party. Further exacerbating matters is that the party was responsible for the relocation of two Ontario gas plants, the cost of which was dramatically understated to the public.

The opponents – 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.

“Energy will always be a political issue,” explains John Kourtoff, CEO of Toronto-based Trillium Power Corp. “In Ontario, the PCs framed renewable energy as if renewables had been the culprit of the rising cost of electricity in the province.”

In reality, Kourtoff notes, the Ontario Energy Board found that renewables accounted for only 6% of rising electricity prices, while the other 94% was attributable to nuclear and fossil fuel. Rival generators, such as nuclear energy, quickly piled on, trying to distort public sentiment.

If there is an election, he says, wind advocates will be pulling for the incumbents. Otherwise, the industry could in big trouble.

“If the Conservatives win, renewable energy is toast in Ontario,” predicts Kourtoff. “It will be like the Dark Ages.”


Source: http://www.nawindpower.com/...

MAR 15 2014
https://www.windaction.org/posts/40237-spring-election-could-reset-ontario-renewables
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