Wind, solar to boost grid with 1,540 MW of new generating capacity
TORONTO—Canada’s most populous province is expected to continue to provide a welcome environment for renewable power projects over the next year and a half, according to the Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator’s new 18-month outlook.
Of the approximately 1,850 megawatts of generating capacity Ontario will add to its grid from Jan. 1 to June of 2017, 1540 MW will come from renewable sources, with the province’s growing fleet of wind turbines providing the lion’s share of the gains. With wind and solar accounting for 1,300 MW and 240 MW of gains respectively, gas generation will also boost the province’s grid with 300 MW in new capacity.
Along with the growing base in renewable technologies, the IESO anticipates Ontario’s grid energy will remain reliable as the operator implements new initiatives such as its first demand response program. The province’s electricity demand is actually expected to decline this year as consumers conserve through lighting efficiency improvements and other measures.
“Ontario continues to have adequate resources to meet consumers’ needs over the next 18 months,” Kim Warren, the IESO’s vice-president of Market and System Operations, said. “The combination of conservation and time-of-use rates will continue to have a role in reducing demand through the upcoming winter season.”
By June of 2017, Ontario is expected to have approximately 4,550 MW of wind generating capacity as well as 380 MW of solar.