Electrical Business


OPA microFIT cut to harm Ontario solar sector says ECO

July 26, 2010 | By

According to Gord Miller – the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario – the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) must fully disclose the financial details it used to justify the price cut to Ontario’s renewable energy feed-in tariff (microFIT) program. Miller warns that without that information people will “lose confidence in Ontario’s commitment to green energy.”

On July 2, the OPA proposed reducing the tariff rate for solar energy
under the microFIT program. Anyone interested had until August 3 to
comment on the changes, but Miller argues “you can’t have effective
consultations if all the facts are not being released.” Using his
position – on July 6 – the ECO requested the OPA fully disclose their
assumptions and calculations. Up until July 21, there has been no
response from the OPA.

With the 27% drop from the earlier tariff of 80.2 ¢/kWh, ground-mounted
solar installations would receive 58.8 ¢/kWh for the electricity they
produce. Only rooftop solar installations would still receive the
previous 80.2 ¢/kWh. This cut affects installations that generate less
than 10 kW of electricity which are typically installed on residential
properties, farm and small businesses. It is estimated that about
11,000 applicants would be affected by the cut.

More than 200 people attended the town hall meeting that occurred on
July 22 in Vaughan, Ont. to discuss the causes, impacts and solutions
to the rate change.



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