Ontario's Coal Phase Out Plan

Archived Backgrounder

Ontario's Coal Phase Out Plan

Ministry of Energy

Ontario Power Generation currently has 6,315 MW of coal-fired capacity provided by 15 units that operate at four plants across Ontario. Four coal units - Units 3 and 4 at Nanticoke and Units 1 and 2 at Lambton, with a combined capacity of 1,910 MW, will be permanently shut down in late 2010.

The closure of these four units is a step towards meeting Ontario's commitment to fight climate change - the elimination of coal-fired generation by the end of 2014.

Since 2003 coal-fired generation in Ontario has been decreasing. The closure of the coal-fired Lakeview Generating Station in 2005 eliminated carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to taking approximately 500,000 cars off Ontario roads.

Ontario Power Generation (OPG) will continue to reduce carbon dioxide emissions through an ongoing coal phase out plan which targets emissions from coal at 19.6 million tonnes in 2009 and 15.6 million tonnes in 2010. By 2011, coal electricity generation will be cut by two-thirds.

In the meantime, OPG is currently looking into the feasibility of converting some of its coal-fired units to burn biomass, with an initial focus on the potential for converting Atikokan to burn a renewable fuel by a target of 2012.

Ontario's commitment to a greener energy supply has motivated Ontario to aggressively add new sources of renewable supply. Since 2003, Ontario has increased its online wind capacity from 15 megawatts (MW) of wind power to over 1,100 MW -- enough capacity to power more than 300,000 Ontario homes. Ontario now ranks as Canada's top leading province in wind power, with more capacity than the other two leading provinces (Quebec and Alberta) combined.

Last year nearly 80 per cent of Ontario's electricity came from non-emitting sources of power such as nuclear, water and wind. The Green Energy Act features North America's most comprehensive tariff which will spur further development of Ontario's renewable potential. The tariff offers guaranteed and attractive prices to developers of wind, water, solar, biomass and biogas power projects.

Amy Tang, Minister's Office, 416-327-6747
OPG Media Relations, 416-592-4008 or 1-877-592-4008

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