Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Canada: New rules jeopardize wind and solar projects

Never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, trust a politician.
From the Toronto Star:

Ontario's standard offer program, designed to encourage the development of small-scale renewable energy projects, was launched less than two years ago and has already surpassed the expectations of its 10-year mandate.

The program pays a premium for renewable energy coming from wind, solar, biogas or small hydro projects 10 megawatts or less in size. So far the Ontario Power Authority, which administers the program, has approved contracts for 1,300 megawatts of projects – 30 per cent higher than the original target.

The provincial government calls the response incredible. The power authority calls it a success story. Some project developers, however, are calling their lawyers. Things, it appears, could get nasty.

Last week, the power authority announced some new rules in advance of a planned review of the popular program. Some of the changes make sense, such as streamlining administration of the program to make it simpler. Interim deadlines are also being set to ensure projects move forward in a more timely fashion.

But citing the need to make the program "open to more participants" – that is, small community co-operatives – the power authority has decided to set up a few roadblocks for larger developers that have been lured to the premium prices the government pays for wind and solar power.

These developers can no longer deploy more than 50 megawatts of projects at any given time. They are also limited to a single 10-megawatt project per transformer station, amounting to a major restriction on where proposed projects can be located....MORE

Apologies to the spirit of the Great Man
(which is both arrogant and ironic):
" Never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.''

Via the Churchill Centre