Waterpower Industry Responds to Termination of Energy Contracts

(July 16 – Toronto, ON) The Ontario Waterpower Association (OWA) has expressed its disappointment in the Ontario government’s broad brush decision to terminate energy contracts, as announced by the Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines.

“While I understand and appreciate the government’s concerns about electricity costs, the affected waterpower projects are scheduled to come online just when the province will face a shortage of electricity.” said Paul Norris, President of the OWA. “Made in Ontario waterpower is the backbone of a reliable, affordable electricity system and is strongly supported by the Ontario public.”

On Friday July 13, the Minister issued a directive to the Independent Electricity System Operator that would result in the cancellation of 758 energy contracts, 15 of which are for waterpower projects across Southern Ontario. The vast majority of these projects enjoy considerable community support and utilize existing infrastructure, improve public safety, create local jobs and manage water levels for recreation and fisheries.

“I urge the government to consider the multiple benefits that these waterpower facilities can provide well into the future,” added Norris. “Waterpower facilities are assets that last forever, reduce electricity costs over time, and support local infrastructure.”

-30-

There are more than 220 waterpower facilities across the province responsible for one quarter of Ontario’s electricity supply – 35 of these facilities have been in production for over a century providing some of the lowest cost energy in the province. A recent opinion poll indicated over 90% public support for waterpower across Ontario.

For more information on the Ontario Waterpower Association, visit: www.owa.ca