June 12, 2013 – Ontario’s Renewable Energy Feed-in Tariff Unravels

Large renewable energy projects will no longer form part of Ontario’s once world-leading Feed-in Tariff (FIT) program.

Following up on his announcement at the CanSIA Solar Ontario 2013 Conference in Niagara Falls on May 30, 2013, Bob Chiarelli, the Minister of Energy issued a Directive to the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) on June 12, 2013 to implement changes to the FIT including:

  • Removal of Large FIT from the program and replacing it with an RFP process.
    • RFP was the regime that preceded the FIT
    • This change was recommended by the Drummond Report (see our post March 7, 2012 – Storm Clouds Brew for Wind and Solar in Ontario)
    • Government-owned Ontario Power Generation, forbidden from the FIT, can compete in the RFP
  • Changes to the “domestic content” requirement for FIT projects
    • This is required to comply with rulings from the World Trade Organization that the requirement discriminates against foreign firms
    • Details of the changes remain to be announced
  • Increased local participation in future renewable energy projects to support municipalities
    • This, coupled with recently announced regional planning initiatives, reinstates some of the control over renewable energy projects previously removed from municipalities
  • Annual
 procurement targets of 150 megawatts for Small FIT and 50 megawatts for microFIT for
 each of the next four years
    • There will be an annual price review
    • New priority points table and new provisions for contract capacity set-aside for municipal, community, public sector and aboriginal applicants
  • The OPA will sign Power Purchase Agreements with Constrained Applicants who have
 Combined Projects and successful results from the Transmission Availability
 Test and the Distribution Availability Test
  • Aboriginal Participation Projects with Large FIT contracts that are on-reserve will be offered a four-year extension to the Milestone Date for
 Commercial Operation

To read the full Directive please click here

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