Ontario Election 2011 - Energy Resources

Support Ontario's Green Energy Act!

Posts tagged cost

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FACT: Subsidies to renewable energy are no greater than those for fossil fuel and nuclear power

The criticism of the price Ontario currently pays for renewable energy ignores twoimportant facts: renewable prices are still falling, while the costs of fossil fuels and nuclear are rising — and the government subsidizes fossil fuels and nuclear energy to a much greater extent than green energy.

The nuclear industry has been subsidized since day one. Nuclear has accumulated over $20 billion in subsidizes federally, including over $1.2 billion in the past five years — and it continues to collect federal subsidies now, even after being sold to SNC Lavelin.

Compare that to wind, solar and biomass industries that together have received about $1.7 billion from the federal government, which are being spread out from 2002 to 2021. In other words, 10 years from now, renewable energy will have received about 10 per cent of the subsidies nuclear has received — assuming no more nuclear subsidies are paid out in the next 10 years.

The California Energy Commission estimated new nuclear costs between 17-34 c/kWh in 2010. The low end of that estimate is still more expensive then Ontario’s prices for wind power under the feed-in tariff, and the high end approaches the feed-in tariff price for large-scale solar power projects at current costs, which have been dropping rapidly (down 50 per cent) in past five years.

Filed under nuclear fossil fuels subsidies green energy act fit feed-in tariff dropping price cost

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FACT: The Green Energy Act will not dramatically increase the price of electricity.

Even if Ontario stopped all new investment in renewable power today, electricity prices would continue to rise. This is due to the inevitable expense of upgrading our ageing electricity grid and building new power plants as old ones retire. This recent Pembina Institute report compared how replacing renewable energy with power from fossil fuels would affect Ontario electricity prices. Click for more detail.

This recent Pembina Institute report compared how replacing renewable energy with power from fossil fuels would affect Ontario electricity prices. Click for more detail.

Critics of green energy are falsely comparing the cost of renewable energy projects today with the price of electricity from facilities built thirty years ago. Any comparison should be against the cost of building and operating any new power plant.

The Pembina Institute recently modeled these complex interactions for Ontario’s electricity system. Our report on that study, Behind the Switch, found that cancelling the Green Energy Act would likely result in a slightly slower price increase in the short term — saving the average household about the cost of a cup of coffee and a muffin per month. In the longer term, however, the Green Energy Act would result in cost savings for consumers, since the cost of renewables will continue to decrease every year, while the price of natural gas is forecast to continue increasing over the next 20 years.

Filed under Green Energy Act GEA FIT Pembina Wind solar Biogas hydro bill cost price

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Behind the Switch: Pricing Ontario's Electricity Options

This report examines how scaling back Ontario’s plans to develop renewable energy would affect electricity prices, using an integrated energy system simulator to compare two main scenarios.

The first scenario is based on Ontario’s current Long-Term Energy Plan, in which a large part of new electricity generation comes from additional renewable capacity supported under the Green Energy Act; the second scenario tests the effect of eliminating the Act and largely expanding natural gas in place of future renewable resources.

Behind the switch: pricing Ontario electricity options finds that Ontario consumers would see virtually no relief from high electricity prices if the province cancelled its support for renewable energy under the Green Energy Act.

In fact, the study indicates that investing in renewable energy today is likely to save Ontario ratepayers money within the next 15 years, as natural gas becomes more expensive and as the cost of renewable energy technology continues to decrease.

Filed under Pembina Tim Weis cheaper cost economic impacts renewable energy scenarios natural gas nuclear