Ontario’s Climate Action Plan
In 2007, Ontario launched “Go Green: Ontario’s Climate Action Plan”, with a promise to cut carbon emissions to:
- 6 per cent below 1990 levels by 2014 – a reduction of 61 megatonnes relative to business-as-usual
- 15 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020 – a reduction of 99 megatonnes relative to business-as-usual
- 80 per cent below 1990 levels by 2050
The government website on climate change does not provide a link to the plan, only to the latest progress report. The plan includes a number of key components:
- Setting green targets
- Phasing out coal
- Participating in Cap and Trade
- Investing in MoveOntario 2020
- Supporting green power
- Protecting our green spaces
- Working with provincial and federal governments and ministries
- Helping communities “go green”
Of these, the commitment to phase-out of coal-fired power plants is the major contributor to meeting the climate targets.
A second and more recent strategy dealing with climate adaptation was released in 2011. This strategy acknowledges that climate change will have significant effects on Ontario’s weather, ecosystems, and economy. contains recommendations with respect to planning and infrastructure investments.
- The Ministry of the Environment publishes progress reports on the climate plan. You can find the 2008/09 report on this page, the 2009/2010 report on this page, and the most recent 2012 report here.
- The Environmental Commissioner has been charged with producing an annual climate change report (including a review of the Ministry reports). The reports can be found on the ECO website.
Energy Conservation and Green Power
Ontario’s Green Energy Act (2009) was created to expand renewable energy generation, encourage energy conservation and promote the creation of clean energy jobs. The two main elements of the plan are:
- energy conservation targets for the province’s local utilities
|Capacity||4,550 MW||5,840 MW||6,700 MW||7,100 MW|
|Generation||13 TWh||21 TWh||25 TWh||28 TWh|
- a Feed-in Tariff (FIT) program to provide stable prices for generators of energy from renewable sources, including 54.9 cents per kwh for solar rooftop. See the full list of prices here.
- The Environmental Commissioner has been charged with producing an annual energy conservation report. The reports can be found on the ECO website.