Ontario Releases Long-Term Energy Plan

The Government of Ontario today released the 2017 Long-Term Energy Plan (the LTEP) entitled Delivering Fairness and Choice. The LTEP focuses on energy affordability, innovation and customer choice, according to the Province.

Ontario has effectively decarbonized its electricity sector, with emissions for the sector forecast to account for about two per cent of the province's total greenhouse gas emissions in 2017.

This bulletin provides a high-level summary of the LTEP's key features. The full Executive Summary of the LTEP is available here.

The Independent Electricity System Operator (the IESO) and the Ontario Energy Board (the OEB) are required to submit implementation plans outlining the steps they plan to take to implement the goals and objectives set out in the LTEP to the Minister of Energy by no later than January 31, 2018.

Affordable and Accessible Energy

  • Ontario's Fair Hydro Plan reduced electricity bills by an average of 25 per cent for residential consumers and will hold increases to the rate of inflation for four years.

  • Ontario will share the costs of existing electricity investments more fairly with future generations by refinancing a portion of the Global Adjustment.

  • Ontario will enhance consumer protection by giving the OEB increased regulatory authority over unit sub-meter providers.

  • The Province will continue to support expanded access to natural gas.

Energy System Flexibility

  • Market Renewal in the energy sector will allow the province to adjust to changes and cost-efficiently acquire the electricity resources that are needed to meet future demand.

  • Ontario's cap and trade program and the Climate Change Action Plan will support efforts to decarbonize the fuels sector.

  • Cap and trade will increase the price of fossil fuels and affect how often fossil-fueled generators get called on to meet the province's electricity demand.

  • The Province will direct the IESO to establish a formal process for planning the future of the integrated provincewide bulk system.

Technological Innovation

  • The net metering framework will continue to be enhanced to give customers new ways to participate in clean, renewable energy generation and to reduce their electricity bills.

  • Barriers to the deployment of cost-effective energy storage will be reduced.

  • Utilities will be able to intelligently and cost-effectively integrate electric vehicles into their grids, including smart charging in homes.

  • The IESO will work with the Province to develop a program to support a select number of renewable distributed generation demonstration projects that are strategically located and help inform the value of innovative technologies to the system and to customers.

  • The Province intends to fund international demonstration projects to help Ontario's innovative energy companies diversify to foreign markets.

Value and Performance for Customers

  • The Province will work with the OEB and LDCs to redesign the electricity bill to make it more useful for consumers in understanding and managing their energy costs.

  • Ontario will direct the IESO to develop a competitive selection or procurement process for transmission, and to identify possible pilot projects.

Energy Conservation and Efficiency

  • The Green Ontario Fund will provide energy consumers with a co-ordinated, one-window approach to encourage conservation across multiple energy sources and programs.

  • Combined heat and power projects that use supplied fossil fuels to generate electricity will, beginning July 1, 2018, no longer be eligible to apply for incentives under the Conservation First Framework or the Industrial Accelerator Program. Behind-the-meter waste energy recovery projects will continue to be eligible, as will renewable energy projects, including those paired with energy storage systems.

Climate Change

  • Ontario will encourage the construction of near net zero and net zero energy and carbon emission homes and buildings to reduce emissions in the building sector.

  • The Province proposes to expand the options for net metering to give building owners more opportunities to access renewable energy generation and energy storage technologies.

  • Ontario will continue to work with industry partners to introduce renewable natural gas into the province's natural gas supply and expand the use of lower-carbon fuels for transportation.

First Nation and Métis Capacity and Leadership

  • The Province will seek to improve the availability of conservation programs for First Nations and Métis, including communities served by Independent Power Authorities.

  • Ontario, working with the federal government, will continue to prioritize the connection of remote First Nation communities to the grid and support the four First Nation communities for which transmission connection is not economically feasible.

  • The Aboriginal Community Energy Plan program will be expanded to help communities implement their energy plans and support Ontario's Climate Change Action Plan.

  • The Province will engage with First Nations and Métis to explore options for supporting energy education and capacity building, the integration of small-scale renewable energy projects, net metering and other innovative solutions that address local or regional energy needs and interests.

Regional Solutions and Infrastructure

  • Ontario will continue to implement the Conservation First policy in regional and local energy planning processes.

  • The Province will direct the IESO to review the regional planning process and report back with options and recommendations that address the challenges and opportunities that have emerged.

For further information, please contact Lisa DeMarco at lisa@demarcoallan.com.

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