Ontario PC leader Tim Hudak pledged to end key provisions of the Ontario Green Energy Act. This is a strong statement that deserves to be applauded.
Tim Hudak’s decision will likely spark debate heading into the October election. The GEA was proposed as both an environmental policy and a job creation policy, under the Liberal government. It is misguided on both scores.
Finance Minister Dwight Duncan claims to have created 3,000 jobs but the facts are that only 27 jobs have been created. The green energy industry in Ontario depends on government subsidies for its survival and not a new source of jobs.
The funds for the subsidies have to be raised through new taxation, and the burden of higher energy prices kills more jobs than the subsidies create. This is as true for wind power as it is for greenhouse cucumbers and it doesn’t matter if the taxes are visible or are hidden in the form of feedin tariffs and artificially inflated electricity bills.
In countries like Spain and Portugal, which launched their own versions of the GEA a decade ago, the job losses are now being confirmed by independent analyses. Scotland also experienced a net job loss from wind power.
The Green Energy Act will raise electricity costs and decrease employment. Despite promising Ontario families that his expensive energy experiments and Green Energy Act would only raise rates by one per cent, Dalton McGuinty now admits in last year’s fall economic update that bills will rise by an additional 46 per cent by 2015.
The McGuinty government is out of touch and he has forgotten what it’s like for families and business to cope. A Tim Hudak government will cancel the McGuinty energy scam known as the Green Energy Act.
ERIC RENAUD, Windsor