Long Term Energy Plan Update
In light of the anticipated release of Ontario’s new long term energy plan (“2013 LTEP”) near the end of November, we wanted to provide a summary of our colleague George Vegh’s paper, “Energy Planning: The Case for a Less Prescriptive Approach” George is the head of McCarthy Tétrault’s energy regulatory practice.
The paper provides an analysis of the discussion paper and data released by the Government of Ontario on the 2013 LTEP. It compares this year’s plan with previous planning exercises, and proposes a less prescriptive approach to electricity planning.
George identifies the opportunity for a dramatic course correction, especially in connection with the role of renewable power, new nuclear facilities and conservation. The data accompanying the 2013 LTEP shows that capacity requirements that are not planned for in terms of specific commitments to these resources have dramatically increased under the newest plan. This suggests that the uncommitted capacity requirements may be met by a greater range of resources, including alternative resources absent from previous planning exercises, such as natural gas and imported power.
George argues that the new LTEP treats the resources as “options that presumably will have to compete among each other to meet the Province’s capacity and energy needs.” He rules out growth in demand as the cause of such developments, and attributes it instead to the open-mindedness of the Government in moving away from a supply mix approach toward a goal-oriented approach.
This open-mindedness reflects a welcome development for the Province, which, in the past, has adopted a much more prescriptive approach to choosing generation technologies.
Stay tuned for further updates on Ontario’s 2013 LTEP.
Energy Policy Ontario Power Sector