11 October 2010
What drives the energy business? Economics of course. Check out where the world's largest solar photovoltaic is getting built...not, California, no, it is Ontario, Canada, up in the great white north. Are these corporate giants crazy?
Ontario welcomes the official opening of the world's largest solar photovoltaic (PV) farm and milestones for two new wind projects in South-West Ontario.
The province has attracted over $1 billion in private sector investment and created more than 1,400 construction jobs through three renewable energy projects that will produce enough electricity to power about 83,000 homes each year, replacing dirty, smog-producing coal with clean, renewable energy.
These projects will add almost 300 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy capacity to the more than 8,000 MW of new cleaner power that has been created since 2003. Ontario is building more clean energy to phase out dirty, smog-producing coal-fired generation and to keep the lights on for Ontario families' homes, businesses, hospitals and schools.
The three renewable energy projects celebrated today include:
The Sarnia Solar Project - 80 MW now online, represents approximately $400 million of investment and enough electricity each year to power more than 12,000 homes - or about 40 per cent of homes in the City of Sarnia. Construction of the project created about 800 jobs.
The Gosfield Wind Farm - 50 MW now online in Kingsville, represents enough electricity each year to power about 16,000 homes. Construction of the project created about 300 jobs.
The Comber Wind Project - 166 MW to come online next fall, in Lakeshore. Comber is expected to produce enough electricity each year to power 55,000 homes. Construction of the project is expected to create 300 or more jobs at peak.
The Gosfield and Comber Wind projects represent about $650 million of private sector investment and enough electricity each year to meet the needs of over 40 per cent of Essex County homes.
Renewable projects that generate negligible emissions support the McGuinty government's Open Ontario Plan to attract investment, build a clean energy economy and create jobs for Ontario families and helps provide clean air to breathe for our children and grandchildren
ONTARIO RENEWABLE ENERGY QUICK FACTS
Each of these projects has a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement with the Ontario Power Authority. Ontario permanently closed four units of dirty coal-fired generation on October 1, 2010, four years ahead of schedule.
Ontario is Canada's leader in wind and solar capacity, home to the largest wind farms in Canada and now home of the largest solar PV farm in the entire world.
In 2009, more than 80 per cent of our generation came from emissions-free sources.