Green energy to cost $310 more per house: Report

Zapped: The High Cost of Ontario’s Renewable Electricity Subsidies
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by Jonathan Jenkins, Toronto Sun
TORONTO – The Ontario Liberals Green Energy Act will cost every household in the province $310 on their electricity bills and the estimated 50,000 jobs it would create will cost $179,000 (each) in subsidies, the C.D. Howe Institute said in a report released Tuesday.

“Ontario’s renewable electricity subsidy is a costly means of reducing domestic GHG emissions and creating jobs,” the report, co-written by former Ontario Power Authority boss Jan Carr, says.

“These costs will be borne by Ontario electricity consumers and amount to $310 annually per household, with additional costs due to the intermittency of power from renewables and the transmission infrastructure investment needed.”

Compared to building natural gas-fired generation, the reports says Ontario will pay $1.5 billion more for subsidized wind, solar and biomass electricity.

Ontario could reduce that total impact of the GEA if it stopped offering subsidized energy contracts through its Feed-In-Tariff (FIT) program, the report says.

“The authors have overstated their calculation of the FIT program,” Andrew Block, spokesman for Energy Minister Dwight Duguid said in an email. “We provided a fully costed long-term energy plan including what electricity prices would be over the next 20 years. Renewable power will compose 13% of our energy supply.”

The study also does not take into account the Clean Energy Benefit, the Liberal program that is cutting hydro electric bills by 10% over the next five years.

10 thoughts on “Green energy to cost $310 more per house: Report

  1. I find it hard to believe that the entire “green energy” program will only cost us $1.5 billion more than if it didn’t exist. Just one project alone – which we don’t need (McLean’s Mountain Wind Farm on Manitoulin Island) – is projected at $200 million in capital costs – plus cost to connect to the grid – which has got to be astronomical at “Hydro One” levels of efficiency and pay scales – plus costs for technology to stabilize the grid (which I’m not sure exists yet) – plus capital and operating costs (and additional wear and tear) for back-up power – plus $2 billion for Smart Meters. This is all wasted money because we don’t need the power and we don’t need Smart Meters if the grid is stable, which it would be without all these intermittent power sources springing up all over the place.

    Viewed another way, 50,000 jobs which are subsidized $179,000 each represents a waste of $9 billion. One could argue that 1 of every 2.2 subsidized job would have otherwise been created in the real economy (based on the Spanish study showing 2.2 real jobs are lost for every “green” subsidized job) so the true waste is ONLY $9 billion x 1.2/2.2 = $4.8 billion ! What’s a few billion between friends ! (or to the Ontario Government) !!!

  2. Question:

    Is the 10% Clean Energy Benefit borrowed money by the Liberals that we eventually have to repay with interest?

  3. So they give us a credit called the Clean Energy Benefit – 10%

    Then we all get to pay it back with interest.


    Then McGuinty slams Hudak for taking off the 8% provincial portion of the HST if elected.


  4. is it all about the money, or is it about the future of cleaner air?? sacrifices sometimes have to be made. doesn’t the air we breathe bother you more than your wallet getting thinner? everything in our world is getting more expensive, but with renewable clean energy at least it’s towards something worth paying for! the area I live in is one of the highest cancer rated counties in Canada! and this is suppose to be one of the best places in Canada if not the world to live??????

    • People died from cancer in Canada long before there was industrial activity. And this includes all types of cancer.

      In olden times most people didn’t live long enough to develope cancer but died due to other diseases and medical conditions.

    • Dan, Google Ross McKitrick’s paper on coal and air quality in Ontario.

  5. Dan: We are paying for something has not been shown to contribute towards cleaner air. The evidence suggests that IWTs do not produce enough reliable power to make any reduction from other sources to compensate for the dirty air created during the manufacturing, transporting and construction of IWT developments. If clean air is truly the goal than IWTs would not be considered an option.

  6. It’s nothing but a shell game Brad D. Which shell are you hiding under? Which one is Dalton under? I guess John Wilkinson is under shell number 3. We can move them about but the same 3 guys are always there… for now. October is coming! October is coming and we will be ready to escort you out of Queen’s Park.

  7. I’d expect a better analysis from DR. Jan Carr. The following two key points speak to over- and under-estimates of the costs.

    1. It’s simplistic and incorrect to spread the costs across just households. Allowing for costs borne by other, non-residential consumers (though larger ones are side-stepping some of the costs and everyone else is also trying to duck out on the bill), an additional $ 1.5 billion in annual costs increases the supposed average annual residential bill (based on 10,000 kWh) by about $ 123.

    2. By saying the alternative or displaced cost is that for natural gas and picking rates in the order of $ 110/MWh, they’re really letting nrew renewable off the hook. They will displace all sorts of generation and most importantly will drive subsidized exports. The natural gas plant costs will be sunk while the renewables will be paid a blended rate of 19.6 cents/kWh (that’s what I calculated, their number says 19.8) while the export revenue will come at 3 – 4 cents/kWh. Assuming 3.5 cents/kWh, the total annual premium over market paid is $ 2.78 billion and the average annual residential impact is $ 228.

  8. The Ross McKitrick papers can be found here…. He also references the independent study done by Scottish(?) researchers.

    Feel free to go through his research all you doubters…

    This air quality thing is conjecture. It is unproven and nothing but a set of calculations based on bad formulas and worse assumptions.

    Nothing that a course on “creative Writing” at the the Banff School of Whaatever can’t fix though….

    See previous wind concerns articles…

    Just remember that this is the BIO of the person driving this garbage…

    Contributor Biography
    “Mr. Forman holds a Master’s degree in philosophy from McGill University. He interned at The Nation – America’s oldest weekly journal – and studied creative writing at the Banff Centre for the Arts. From 1997-2004, he was Vice President of Strategic Communications Inc., a firm that provides political consulting and fundraising advice to the non-profit sector. In 1999, Strategic Communications was named to The Profit 100 as one of Canada’s fastest growing firms.

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