Articles filed under Taxes & Subsidies from Canada

The carbon tax experience - a cautionary tale

In 1996, Denmark went on to hit industrial producers with a $15 per tonne carbon tax, initially neutralized by cuts in payroll taxes. What happened? By 1998, manufacturers started shutting their doors due to high energy prices, and overall Danish carbon tax revenues started to fall along with manufacturing jobs. At the same time, the cost of government programs rose significantly. The government's solution incredibly was to - wait for it - subsidize electricity to select manufacturers and raise income taxes by lowering the income threshold on the country's top marginal rate. By 2001, with economic growth hovering at one- seventh-of-one-percent, Danes making over CAD$50,000 paid 59 per cent of their income in taxes and had to cope with record electricity prices. The entire debacle led to a change of government that year, with the incoming government promising a tax freeze, followed by a tax reduction - including those taxes on energy.
12 Mar 2008

Winds of change blow in; Creststreet to sell stake in Pubnico power project

Atlantic Canada's largest wind farm is up for sale. Creststreet Power and Income Fund LP of Toronto, a significant owner of the $50-million wind farm in Pubnico Point, Yarmouth County, wants to sell its share of the development in response to the federal government's decision to eliminate the tax benefits of trusts. ...Creststreet's recent quarterly results show that for the first nine months of 2007, Pubnico Point's production was eight per cent below the independent engineer's projection, compared with seven per cent the previous year. The lower production is being blamed on lower wind speeds, according to the Creststreet report.
7 Feb 2008

Feds Cough Up 53 Million For Prince Wind Farm

The Prince Wind Energy Farm, situated on 20,000 acres of land northwest of Sault Ste. Marie, qualified for the one cent per kilowatt-hour incentive under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power initiative. The wind farm's 126 turbines are capable of generating up to 189 megawatts of clean, renewable power ...Over ten years, this ecoENERGY program will provide about $53 million to the wind project and ensure that renewable energy generated at the wind farm can be delivered at competitive prices for Canadian consumers.
8 Nov 2007

Vestas on crest of alternative energy wave

Canadian investors looking for exposure to the booming alternative energy sector have a handful of domestic players to choose from, but the local pickings are pretty slim and most of the companies are small. So why not look overseas, to one of the green behemoths that has sprung up on the international scene? ...The fast-growing U.S. wind power industry, driven by favourable government tax policy, is Vestas' largest current market. ...Some analysts are also urging caution over Vestas' high price. "We find the shares are fundamentally overvalued," said analyst Christian Nagstrup of Jyske Bank, a Danish financial institution. The biggest risk he sees at Vestas is a bottleneck in getting parts to build the turbines. Subcontractors have been slow in delivering key components, and that could slow delivery of complete turbines, Mr. Nagstrup said in a recent report.
25 Oct 2007

Money Blowing in the Wind

Wind power is not the answer to global warming. Do we have alternatives? We certainly do have alternatives to windmills but they would disrupt the lifestyle of electors and consumers. In Paris, an article in the September 2007 issue of the medical journal, The Lancet, shows with supporting calculations that it would be better to minimize human consumption of meat, for 80% of agriculturally produced methane comes from farm animals. Wind turbines won't even alter the greenhouse gas equation but by a mere .03%, as mentioned above. The way to reduce CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases is to use less energy. Governments must massively invest in energy conservation measures rather than in these wind machines. According to another research, if every English household switched for one single low energy light bulb, a fossil fuel-burning electrical plant could be shut down! Wind power would only be interesting if energy produced can be stored. It has been proposed to fill reservoirs of large hydroelectric dams, for example. An Australian method has just offered in September 2007 to store electricity in liquid accumulators. Quebec would thus be able to utilize wind energy because the major part of our electricity comes from hydroelectric dams, which is not the case for Ontario or New York where, as almost everywhere else in the world, wind power must be backed up by carbon-based generating stations.
19 Oct 2007

Headwinds impede progress of turbine maker AAER

Following several weeks of dramatic price increases where the stock of the Bromont, Que.-based company more than quadrupled on the TSX Venture Exchange to above $1.60, the shares have plunged in the past three days below $1.18. The start of AAER's runup coincided with the Sept. 19 announcement of the bids for Hydro-Québec's latest call for tenders to build wind farms connected to the province's power grid. ..."The fact that so many [developers] specified [AAER] is what really drove the stock up," said MacMurray Whale, an analyst who follows the alternative energy scene for Cormark Securities Inc. in Toronto. ...In the past few days, however, some investors clearly decided the stock had overshot its true value, and there may also be concerns over the company's untested turbines
18 Oct 2007

Wind farm builder wants more green credits

Ventus Energy, which is building a new wind farm in West Cape near O'Leary, is trying to negotiate a longer-term share of green credits, but P.E.I. isn't willing to give them up. There's no market for green credits yet, but when that market becomes a reality it could generate another $10 million a year for the West Cape wind farm. "We're just not giving up on benefits that help P.E. Islanders down the road build their roads, build their highways and build their schools and hospitals," said Environment Minister George Webster Thursday. "We're just not giving that away."
24 Aug 2007

Feds fund farm

It appears that the federal government is determined to prove that its stated commitment to alternative energy was not just hot air. A local wind farm project recently became the first company in Canada to receive $16.5 million of support from the government under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power Initiative, introduced in January. The recipient of the money, Kettles Hill Wind Energy Inc. is currently finishing construction of a 63-megawatt wind-power facility located five kilometres east of Pincher Creek.
13 Jul 2007

Noisy turbines in Pubnico may cut off WIPPI funding

Atlantic Wind Power Corp had participated in the Wind Power Production Incentive (WIPPI) which is a grant of $10 million (of tax payer's money) over a period of nine years. Natural Resources Canada (NRC) has asked AWPC to produce a proposal as to how they can mitigate the excessive noise at Pubnico. If they cannot produce a proposal (and act on it) to NRC's liking they can cancel the grant. Last May, NRC retained Howe Gastmeier Chapnik Limited (HGC Ltd) to conduct a noise study (again, tax payer's money) of the Pubnico wind farm. This was in response to noise complaints by Daniel d'Entremont and his family.
5 Jul 2007

Melancthon settles issues with CHD

Melancthon Township Council has accepted an "amenities agreement" with Canadian Hydro Developers, and has voted to support the company's position on the Melancthon II wind farm project at the Ontario Municipal Board pre-hearings and main event. The double-barrelled motion carried in an unrecorded vote at the last meeting of the council. The decision does not affect zoning, as that issue is before the OMB.
15 Jun 2007

A mixed energy forecast - Sarnia solar facility $300-million venture

One of the world's largest solar farms will soon rise on Sarnia's outskirts, and other sun-reliant green energy ventures are in the works for sunny Southwestern Ontario. The Ontario government has approved an energy deal with OptiSolar Farms Canada to build a 400-hectare mass of solar panels that will produce 40 megawatts of electricity -- enough to supply 6,000 homes. A key to the project was the government's deal to pay 42 cents a kilowatt-hour -- nearly four times what's paid for other green-generated electricity, such as from wind turbines -- to the solar company.
27 Apr 2007

Farm windmill generates tax puzzle

Assessment agency looking to finance ministry for answers on renewable-energy technologies and property tax increases. The Municipal Property Assessment Corp., a non-profit organization responsible for assessing municipal property taxes in Ontario, has asked the finance ministry to clarify rules that could prove a major setback for renewable energy projects in the province. At issue is whether wind turbines and solar panels add enough value to a property to trigger an increase in annual property taxes. The concern is that the tax increase would offset energy savings or the revenues from clean electricity sold into the grid, reducing the incentive to embrace renewable-energy technologies.
27 Mar 2007

St. Lawrence reaches tax agreement with NeWind

St. Lawrence Mayor Wayde Rowsell has announced his town council has reached a 20-year tax agreement with NeWind Group Inc. The deal, expected to generate tax revenues in excess of $2 million for the community over the life of the contract, was reached Jan. 19 after a week of negotiations between the two parties. NeWind was awarded a contract by Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro in November to operate a commercial wind farm near the town, which will produce 27 megawatts (MW) of power to the island. Mayor Rowsell indicated the town approached the negotiations with the philosophy a good deal would be one mutually beneficial to both the company and the community, an objective he felt was accomplished. “We’re quite pleased with what we negotiated with the company.”
30 Jan 2007

Duncan backs Huron turbines

Ontario’s energy minister pledged yesterday to do what he can to solve the issues that led an Alberta company to shelve a $300-million Huron County wind turbine project. “We were obviously disappointed to hear it is being shelved,” said Energy Minister Dwight Duncan. Citing uncertainties about government approvals, Edmonton-based Epcor Utilities Inc., announced last week it would indefinitely delay plans for Kingsbridge II, a project that would have seen construction of 69 wind turbines in Ashfield-Colborne-Wawanosh Township.
30 Jan 2007

PM to unveil wind, solar power plan; $300M budgeted for energy subsidies

The federal Conservative government is to announce today a subsidy for electricity generated by wind, solar and other forms of renewable energy. The aid – called the EcoEnergy Renewable Power Initiative – will amount to less than a similar Liberal plan the Conservatives scrapped nearly a year ago, the Toronto Star has learned. On Sunday, sources say, the federal government will unveil a revised version of the program that paid part of the cost when homeowners make their house more energy efficient. Today’s announcement on renewable energy is to be made in British Columbia by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn. The program will pay 1 cent per kilowatt-hour for electricity from large-scale renewable sources. A kilowatt-hour is enough to run ten 100-watt light bulbs for an hour. The subsidy will be available for generation that goes into operation during the next four years. The government is budgeting $300 million for that period – enough to support projects with a total generating capacity of 4,000 megawatts.
19 Jan 2007

Renewable energy bid still on track: NSPI

A cancelled wind-power project from last week will not affect Nova Scotia Power Inc.’s newest plan, the utility said yesterday. NSPI wants to hook up another 40,000 homes with renewable energy and is calling for bidders. The company is confident it will meet renewable-energy targets, despite previously missing its own targets and attacking the province’s as being unrealistic. On Friday, a major wind-energy project in Amherst was put on ice, largely because Ottawa withdrew its wind-power incentive program.
20 Dec 2006

NSP chases after more green power

Nova Scotia Power is pledging to generate more green electricity after failing to meet its own voluntary targets this year. The province’s largest electrical utility is promising to add 130 megawatts of additional renewable energy by the end of 2009, enough to supply the power needs of 40,000 homes. But this latest commitment, announced Tuesday in Halifax by NSP president Ralph Tedesco, comes after the utility admitted it has been unable to meet its year-end target of producing 100 megawatts of energy through sources such as the wind, sun, tides and biomass. NSP is blaming the shortfall on a stalled wind project in Amherst that announced Friday it was unable to proceed with its 19-tower wind farm because of the rising cost of turbines and the end of a federal subsidy program.
20 Dec 2006

Putting power in motion - Three new NSP turbines being built atop Cumberland County peak

HIGGINS MOUNTAIN — The Nova Scotia government’s recently released targets for producing renewable energy are achievable, but incentives might be needed to make them a reality, says the president of Nova Scotia Power. Developers, some of whom are under-capitalized, must make an enormous investment, Ralph Tedesco said Tuesday. "I think it will take a variety of incentives," he said. "Ultimately it becomes a public policy issue."
23 Nov 2006
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