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Ontario’s big wind bonanza: Over 90% of subsidies funneled to just 11 companies

Brady Yauch — Financial Post — February 4, 2015

When the Ontario government launched its Green Energy Act (GEA ) in 2009, it promised “new green economy jobs” and ” a wide range of economic opportunities.” Then Minister of Energy George Smitherman argued that the GEA would be a boon to Ontarians of all stripes: “We see opportunities in our rural communities for farmers, not just to lease their land for big companies that are the proponents of wind farms, but indeed for clusters of farmers to see themselves as investors in projects…. the emergence of thousands of smaller green energy projects—microgeneration—in urban as well as rural areas.”

Yes, everyone would need to pay a little more for renewable power, the public was told, but the benefits would be widely shared, for the ultimate benefit of all. As it turned out, power rates didn’t go up a little – they soared. And the subsidies weren’t widely shared among the folk – a handful of billion dollar companies pocketed most of them, most of them outside the province.

According to an analysis by the Consumer Policy Institute and Energy Probe, 90% of the wind subsidies went to just 11 companies, 80% of the subsidies went to nine companies with annual revenues over $1-billion, 60% of the subsidies went to six companies with more than $10-billion in annual revenue.  Continue reading here…..

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