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Solar projects get nod for provincial contracts

SOURCE: The Chronicle Journal

Northwestern Ontario power producers have taken a small bite out of the province’s green energy Feed-In Tariff program, according to the latest project approvals by the Ontario Power Authority.

Two solar power projects, one in Dorion Township and the other in Terrace Bay, are among the first largest power generators to obtain contracts through Ontario’s Feed-In-Tariff (FIT) program. They were among 510 new green energy projects, most of them solar power installations, approved across the province this week.

Thunder Bay-Superior North MPP Michael Gravelle said Friday that the projects bring the benefits to the region.

“Our province’s electricity future will be spurred by initiatives like these that capture the rays of the sun, the force of wind, water and of renewable gases to light our homes and power our businesses,” he said.

He added that “everyone in Northwestern Ontario should take pride in these developments and look forward to those still to come.”

The successful regional applicants are: Cyntech Corp. of Dorion Township, for a 250 kilowatts solar project; and TNT Properties of Terrace Bay, for a 40-kilowatt solar project.

The 510 projects are to be built in 120 communities across Ontario by farmers, municipalities, local distribution companies, commercial businesses, industrial customers, public institutions such as schools and hospitals, a winery and even a church. The projects range from 10 kilowatts to 500 kilowatts and have a total generating capacity of 112 megawatts, enough energy to power more than 13,000 homes.

About 95 per cent of the projects are for solar generation with the remaining being: bio-mass (one), biogas (20), water (four), and onshore wind (three) projects.

A detailed list of the projects is available on the Ontario Power Authority’s website: www.fit.powerauthority.on.ca.

FIT encourages the development of renewable energy projects from a diverse range of producers, including homeowners, schools, farmers, large retailers and small businesses, by offering long-term, stable prices for the electricity generated.

“Everybody is participating from everywhere in Ontario, from farmers, schools and hospitals to large scale retail and commercial operations,” said Energy and Infrastructure Minister Brad Duguid.

“These projects will create a new source of income while providing new clean and green electricity in Ontario, particularly on hot, sunny summer days when demand soars. With our new domestic content rules, these projects will also help create new green collar jobs here in Ontario, as well as major economic investments in equipment services here at home,” he added.

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