Ontario Needs Gas-Fired ElectricityMay 5, 2021
(Toronto, May 5, 2021) – The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) and Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) released the following statement today in response to motions calling for the Government of Ontario to eliminate gas-fired electricity generation. We are urging the Ontario government not to phase out gas-fired electricity so that industry can adequately balance environmental and economic objectives in Ontario.
“Since phasing out coal-fired generation, Ontario has one of the cleanest electricity systems in North America. Eliminating gas-fired generation now would not only undermine the flexibility and affordability of our energy system, but it is also not an effective or practical approach to further reducing our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
“The OCC and CME firmly believe Ontario needs a well-balanced energy system. Electricity only accounts for about 3 percent of Ontario’s emissions, with the main sources being transportation, industry, and buildings. Further decarbonization can be achieved most cost-effectively by leveraging existing and emerging technologies, including hydrogen, renewable natural gas, energy storage, small modular reactors, and geothermal energy.
“Currently, natural gas is the only resource capable of meeting peak demand periods year-round. New nuclear, renewable energy, energy storage, and other assets may all be part of the solution in the future. Until then, demand growth over the next decade will require flexible assets that can be readily deployed, particularly as the economy expands and nuclear generators undergo refurbishment.
“Importing hydro from other provinces is also not an option as existing transmission lines will not provide sufficient capacity and expanding that capacity will require long lead times. Further, Québec is forecasting its own supply challenges over the next decade as it uses electrification to curb emissions.
“We are also deeply concerned about affordability. Replacing the more than 11,300 MW of transmission-connected gas-fired generators in Ontario by 2030 – or nearly a third of total installed supply capacity across the province – will cost in the tens of billions of dollars for businesses and residents. This will have devastating implications for ratepayers and/or taxpayers as Ontario faces post-pandemic economic recovery.”
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About the Ontario Chamber of Commerce
For more than a century, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) has been the independent, non-partisan, indispensable partner of Ontario business. The OCC’s mission is to support economic growth in Ontario by defending business priorities at Queen’s Park on behalf of its network’s diverse 60,000 members.
About Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
Since 1871, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters has been helping manufacturers grow at home and compete around the world. Our focus is to ensure manufacturers are recognized as engines for growth in the economy, with Canada acknowledged as both a global leader and innovator in advanced manufacturing and a global leader in exporting. CME is a member-driven association that directly represents more than 2,500 leading companies who account for an estimated 82 per cent of manufacturing output and 90 per cent of Canada’s exports.
For more information, please contact:
Ceara Copps – Edwards
Manager, Public Affairs
Ontario Chamber of Commerce
firstname.lastname@example.org | 647-936-6734