The Ontario Government has recently passed innovative legislation to stimulate investment in renewable energy, green jobs and energy conservation and demand management. One of the key features of the Green Energy and Economy Act, 2009 (“GEA”) are “Feed in Tariffs” for renewable generation such as wind, solar, biomass and hydro-electric power. This regime of Feed in Tariffs for renewable power has proved successful for many European jurisdictions that have been leaders in the development of renewable power projects.
At the present time, the Ontario Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure is working hard to draft the key regulations to support the GEA to ensure a smooth implementation schedule. This will allow the government to proclaim into force those sections of the GEA that are of critical concern to Ontario’s energy industry. In addition, the various regulatory agencies of the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure are also working hard to develop the specific programs and initiatives required to support the implementation of the GEA. For example, the Ontario Power Authority is drafting rules in respect of the Feed In Tariff regime for generators and a “micro” Feed in Tariff regime for local electricity distribution companies interested in making small scale investments in generation supply for their customers.
The Fall will be extremely busy for industry participants as the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, and the regulatory agencies, release draft regulations and program rules to turn the government’s ambitious green agenda into a reality for the energy industry.