TORONTO – An Ontario hydro distribution company is saying enough already with the high-priced wind and solar energy the province keeps buying despite a glut of electricity in the system.
The board of Niagara-on-the-Lake Hydro released an open statement Wednesday that asked Energy Minister Glenn Thibeault to kill the FIT 5 program – the latest round of renewable energy procurement – before the contracts are signed.
NOTL Hydro says the program guarantees 20-year contracts to wind and solar energy suppliers at above-market rate prices.
“We are not against renewable generation, we are against the method of how the province is procuring it,” Jim Ryan, chairman of NOTL Hydro, said in the statement. “We cannot continue to add $30 million here and $20 million there to the overall cost and not realize that this is going to have a cumulative impact. Today’s high prices are evidence of this.”
The distribution company says it analyzed the financial impact of FIT 4, the last round of mostly solar renewable procurements, completed last June.
“Ontario electricity consumers will be paying an estimated $27.4 million a year over and above the already high cost of electricity in Ontario and will contribute another $61 million to the Global Adjustment each year,” the statement says.
“The generation being built under these contracts, predominately solar, will begin producing electricity in 2017 and 2018 and will continue to generate high-priced electricity over the 20-year life of these contracts.”
The board went on to say that it believes in renewable energy but argued it should be procured based on the “market demand at commercially acceptable prices.”
A response from Thibeault’s office was not immediately available.
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