Ontario’s energy landscape is changing: with access to Quebec hydro power, a consultation to update its Long Term Energy Plan, and beginning of the massive Darlington Nuclear Plant Refurbishment

Ontario and Quebec announced the conclusion of 7 agreements on October 21, including  one will allow the two provinces to trade electricity, energy capacity and energy storage, and another to build more than 200 new high-speed charging stations for electric vehicles along the Highway 401 corridor by the end of March 2017. Ontario will be able to purchase  electricity from Hydro Quebec from 2017 – 2023  – thus reducing costs to consumers and GhG emissions. See the CBC summary here.

On October 13, Ontario announced that it is seeking public input to help develop the province’s next Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP) .  The Environmental Registry notice includes most information, including  the Discussion Guide, Planning Ontario’s Energy Future . The Registry also acts as a portal to receive written submissions until December 16, 2016 .  Other technical documents and the 2013  version of the Long-Term Energy Plan are posted here ; detailed information about the public meetings throughout the province in October and November is here .  Also related to the energy file:  the announcement  on October 19  of the Ontario Rebate for Electricity Consumers Act, 2016, which promises to  reduce electricity bills by 8 per cent (more for rural consumers) as of January 2017.

And the October 14 announcement that the Darlington Nuclear Power Plant Refurbishment project has begun, at a projected cost of $12.8 billion, to be completed by 2026. (The decision  had been announced in January 2016) .  Ontario Power Generation (OPG) commissioned and funded an analysis of the economic impact of the continued operation of Darlington, from 2017 to 2055 ; the report, conducted by the Conference Board of Canada,  is available here .  Regarding job creation, the report estimates  “The combined impact of the refurbishment and continued operation of Darlington Station is projected to increase employment by 704,000 person-years between 2010 and 2055.” See the OPG website  dedicated to the Darlington Refubishment here. 

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