Denley: It makes sense to cancel wind and solar contracts in over-powered Ontario. Here's why

By Randall Denley, Ottawa Citizen, December 5, 2019

The cost and source of Ontario’s electrical power has been a hot topic for years, but happily for the PC government, it had dropped from the headlines. That is, until Energy Minister Greg Rickford was forced to defend the cost of cancelling 750 wind and solar contracts.

It ought to have been easy, because not going ahead with the extra generating capacity is the most rational thing the PCs have done on the electricity file. Ontario already generates more power than it needs and it sells the surplus at a loss. A 2017 study by the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers estimated that exporting power at big discounts cost Ontario up to $1.25 billion over two years. Adding more wind and solar would make that problem worse while doing nothing to make Ontario’s already-green power generation system greener still.

In Ontario, 86 per cent of power comes from emissions-free hydro and nuclear power. Wind provides seven per cent of the province’s electricity, with solar and biofuel contributing less than one per cent. Gas plants produce six per cent of power and act primarily as a backup for wind and solar, when it’s not sunny or windy.

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