Wind Wednesday – Ontario cancels wind farm projects – Alberta introduces new Carbon Reducing Programs

You read that correctly —  Ontario is cancelling 100’s renewable energy projects – Wind farms and solar projects, while Alberta is introducing new ways to CUT Carbon Emissions…

July 18, 2018 (EnergySpotlight) – Since it’s Wind Wednesday.. let’s start in Ontario…

Conveniently early evening last Friday night, Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines released their list of projects identified for “Wind down”… (That’s WIND, not WIND – readers… )

Some are Feed-In Tariff (or FIT) and other’s are Large Renewable Procurement projects.. You can check the list here… warning… it’s looong.. 

Ontario Premier Doug Ford had vowed to cancel and wind down more than 750 contracts for renewable power projects, I guess this is considered “making good on a campaign promise” to deal with Ontario’s pretty obvious electricty problem. 

I won’t deny they need re-work in Ontario’s energy portfolio, but all these renewable projects going down the drain is tough to swallow – and it may be expensive.

“We clearly promised we would cancel these unnecessary and wasteful energy projects,” Ontario Energy Minister Rickford said.

Keeping election promise will save $790 million to help lower electricity bills – They state.

Ontario had incentives for wind and solar projects. It’s now being cut.

Ford also plans to scrap the province’s cap-and-trade program.

He’s also pledged to renegotiate electricity contracts with Hydro One.   

I think that will be an expensive fight… 

German developer Wpd, meanwhile, said it had already installed the second turbine at its 18.45MW White Pines site when it was informed that the project could be abandoned earlier this month.

That will likely be a costly “unwind”. 

To be fair, scrapping the Prince Edward County Wind Farm was another campaign promise that again, local residents were NOT wanting in their backyard, and feel the government is doing what they promised they would, so there’s some merit to that as well. 

However I think a blanket asssumption that ALL green projects that were “Early stage” is again, pretty tough for me to say they were “all bad”… 

In conclusion – The Province claims these cuts will “save electricity customers in the province $790 million” 

We will see. 

Part 2

Environment Minister Shannon Phillips was in Calgary with WestJet to announce $70 Million enviro-challenge to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Up to $70 million is available through the Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) Biotechnology, Electricity and Sustainable Transportation (BEST) Challenge. The challenge will help attract new investment, create jobs, cut energy costs, deliver improved environmental outcomes and build a more diversified economy.

“We are looking for innovative technologies that will strengthen Alberta’s economy and reduce GHG emissions. This challenge reinforces the benefits of working across sectors to find clean technology solutions. As always, Albertans are the source of innovation and we are proud to support made-in-Alberta projects.” – Minister Phillips

Westjet also agreed that the challenge has potential

“WestJet will be a leader in the transition to low-carbon, sustainable air travel. As we continue our growth plan using our young, modern fleet of fuel-efficient aircraft, we see affordable, sustainable jet fuel as the best opportunity to further reduce CO2emissions from aviation. We support initiatives such as the BEST Challenge to encourage creative and innovative approaches to the development and commercialization of clean fuel technologies here in Alberta.”

I was last in line with my question. I sort of fumbled it – but I asked about people (protesters, mostly) – who believe there is no middle ground. That things like Trans Mountain need to be scrapped full-stop.  What do you say to those people? –

The minister reiterated that the pipeline was approved, and going forward. 

But more importantly, I think it’s clear that this middle ground is where Alberta and the rest of Canada should look towards… 

It’s not business as usual. Hot days are getting hotter, and dry days are getting dryer the minister said. It’s true. 

But these projects and initiatives, in my mind –  are the right way to encourage growth in GHG reduction. 

An “all or nothing approach” is not going to work no matter how bad protesters want it that way.

WestJet needs to fly. They’re trying to do it more efficiently. They even mentioned Bio-fuel potential that is almost ZERO in Canada at the moment. Investments will help. 

Business and the environment are no longer separate.

They require a thoughtful approach to both.

I think this is a positive. A+



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