Ontario releases long-term power outlook

Ashley Fitzpatrick
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Long-term plans do not deny N.L. renewables

From 2003 to 2013, Ontario has swung from an energy supply deficit of about 3,800 megawatts to “a comfortable surplus,” according to a note in a brand new policy document: “Achieving balance: Ontario’s long-term energy plan.”

Newfoundland and Labrador's premier Kathy Dunderdale has more than once pointed to Ontario as a potential future customer for this province’s energy bounty, making the release of a long-term outlook there a worthwhile read.

The document was released Monday by the Government of Ontario.

“Ontario has adopted a policy of Conservation First, focusing on rate mitigation over major investments in generation or transmission to curb costs for ratepayers. This will mean pursuing lower-cost options to meet energy needs when and where we need it,” states Bob Chiarelli, Ontario’s Minister of Energy, in the report.

The document also states: “Ontario will consider opportunities for clean imports from other jurisdictions when such imports would have system benefits and are cost effective for Ontario ratepayers.”

There is nothing to either freeze out or specifically welcome imports from Canada’s far east province.

That said, there is a question of whether or not Ontario is realistically still being eyed as an end-user for power from this province.

In an interview with The Telegram in September, then-Natural Resources Minister Tom Marshall said Ontario is interested in power from Gull Island — a hydro project between Muskrat Falls and Churchill Falls with 2,250 megawatts of potential capacity.

Yet, Marshall said, there remains no route to send the power at this point, given the present relationship with Quebec and the inability for the proposed link with Nova Scotia to handle Gull Island's power.

Organizations: The Telegram

Geographic location: Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, Gull Island Canada Quebec Nova Scotia

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