Canadian Manufacturing

Ontario announces plans to procure an additional 930 MW of renewable capacity

Forging ahead with its clean energy agenda, province plans to issue a call for qualifications for its next round of large renewable projects by August



PHOTO: CanWEA

Continuing to build its renewable energy industry, Ontario plans to begin the procurement process for nearly a gigawatt worth of projects by the end of the summer. Wind power projects are expected to make up the majority of the new builds. PHOTO: CanWEA

TORONTO—Ontario is planning to continue fuelling the clean energy revolution.

In conjunction with the Independent Electricity System Operator—an Ontario-owned crown corporation—Canada’s most populous province has announced it will issue a Request for Qualifications for 930 megawatts of new renewable energy generating capacity by August of this year.

“Ontario is leading the pack nationally in renewable energy—delivering jobs and success in a low-carbon economy,” Sarah Petrevan, a senior policy advisor at Clean Energy Canada. “Today’s announcement is timely and guarantees that Ontarians will reap the benefits of clean energy now and into the future so we don’t have to increase our reliance on polluting sources of electricity.”

The timeline for the next wave of projects follows on the heels of the IESO’s announcement of the winners of the first round of its Large Renewable Procurement (LRP) process last month. The electricity system operator awarded contracts for 16 projects representing 455 MW of renewable power capacity March 10.

With the second phase of the LRP program, the province aims to add approximately 600 MW of wind capacity, as well as up to 250 MW of solar photovoltaic, 50 MW of hydroelectric and 30 MW of bio-energy generating capacity. The Ontario government says the major power contracts will create jobs across the province, as well as secure better electricity prices for Ontarians than those seen under the Feed-In Tariff program.

“Ontario is a North American leader in the development of renewable energy projects,” Bob Chiarelli, Ontario’s minister of Energy, said. “By putting emphasis on price and community support, the next phase of renewable energy procurement will save consumers money by putting further downward pressure on electricity prices.”

The beginning of a long procurement process, the RFQ stage will be followed by a Request for Proposals, and ultimately, power purchase contracts.

“In addition to spurring growth at home, the Ontario government needs to continue to support Ontario companies as they seek out new markets,” says Petrevan. “Premier Wynne’s recent trade mission to India illustrates the opportunity abroad. India is seeking to deliver 100 GW of solar capacity and 60 GW of wind by 2022. Ontario companies need access to such markets to continue their growth and success.”

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