The Long Term Energy Plan was released by the Ontario government this week. The full report is available here. (If your Internet connection is a bit fragile, don’t attempt to load up the whole PDF–it is needlessly cumbersome and weighed down with photos and graphics. Got to the By the Numbers section instead.)
One of the major points of the plan is that the government intends to continue with its pursuit of power generation from wind in Ontario, albeit with a slightly longer time frame.
The government has also told people to plan for the necessary power bill increases to make up for this, which they contend is necessary. The Minister of Energy talked about closing the coal plants and he again referred to this mystical $4.4 billion per year in health care costs due to pollution from the coal plants. This figure is complete fantasy–we will deal with that later. Besides, Ontario’s coal plants have been virtually shut down for more than a year–Ontario had already achieved its goals with the amount of wind power it already has.
The reality is that price increases on utility bills of this magnitude are going to cause hardship for Ontario residents, particularly young people, and those on fixed incomes. Energy analyst Tom Adams was a guest on a recent edition of CBC’s Ontario Today, and caller after caller said that they were having to make choices between food for their families and the electricity bill.
Nurses know that poverty is a social determinant of health.
This government is ignoring the commitment of previous governments to provide affordable power for everyone, and instead has opted for the unsupportable “green” mythology which is forcing Ontario into high-priced power, when existing power sources such as hydro-electric are ready and waiting to serve us. The villainization of nuclear is also not supported by the facts.
Higher electricity bills in Ontario will mean:
- increased poverty especially for the young and those on fixed incomes
- job losses
- general decline in services and in the quality of life in what was once a great province, full of opportunity
The Ministry of Energy’s mission is to promote “the development of a safe, reliable, secure and environmentally sustainable energy supply.”
This government and this Premier who has the audacity to call herself a “social justice” leader, should be ashamed.