Richard Carlson's Comments

November 12, 2012

Ontario's Green Energy Act: Domestic Industry and International Trade Wars

Mary, I agree to a large extent. How FITs help even residential houses and for peak-shaving is by giving certainty to the investment. In many ways, net metering is a form of a FIT in that there are fixed prices that the owner of the installations receives, but instead it is applied as a credit to the bill instead of a separate cheque.

However, for net metering to work in Ontario I think the price of power for domestic consumers would have to rise to at least European levels. In net metering systems, people usually only receive the consumer price of electricity back for anything put into the grid (or an avoidance cost in case of peak shaving). Even with on peak costs in Ontario, is there enough economic reason to pay for putting a PV system on the roof as opposed to just paying the grid price? I don't think so, and so the amount people received for net metering would have to be higher than the domestic price. One alternate would be to have suppliers responsible for paying the micro FIT and then to have the micro FIT payments applied against a consumer's bill.

November 05, 2012

The WTO vs. Ontario: Addressing the Bigger Picture of Trade and Renewable Energy

This will harm the FiT in Ontario regardless of the decision as people are no longer making investments. However, I would think it would be obvious that the domestic content rules would go against WTO rules (and we don't complain when people against Chinese wind content rules). There are many ways to get around the WTO -- Italy and Turkey can still promote local content with their FiT programmes.

Richard Carlson

Richard Carlson

Richard Carlson is a Canadian freelance energy researcher and an associate with Cambridge Policy Associates, a UK-based firm that provides business development services to renewable and clean energy companies. Previously based in the UK,...

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