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Use Of Coal Power Down 90 Per Cent

Archived News Release

Use Of Coal Power Down 90 Per Cent

McGuinty Government Improving Health Of Ontarians

Ontario's use of coal-fired power is down 90 per cent in the first three months of 2011, when compared to the same timeframe in 2003. This reduction is cleaning up the air our children and grandchildren breathe.

The government's plan to eliminate coal-fired power by the end of 2014 is the equivalent of taking up to 7 million cars off the road. Since 2003, Ontario has shut down eight of 19 coal units, with another two units coming offline this year.

Ontario is on the right track to building a clean, modern and reliable electricity system using renewable sources of power - like wind and solar. This new system is creating thousands of new, good jobs.and keeping the lights on in our homes and businesses.

To help Ontarians manage the costs of turning on more clean power, the McGuinty government is:

  • Taking 10 per cent off monthly electricity bills for families, farms and small businesses over the next five years with the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit.
  • Moving the Time-of-Use off-peak period for electricity from 9 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays starting May 1, 2011. This will provide an additional 10 hours of electricity every week at the lowest available rate.

Quick Facts

  • On average, households can expect to save about $150 annually through the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit.
  • Between 1995 and 2003 coal-fired generation went up 127 per cent.
  • Ontario is the first jurisdiction in North America - and one of the first in the world - to legislate the shutdown of coal-fired generation.
  • According to a 2005 study prepared for the government, the health-related damages of coal could top $3 billion a year.
  • Ontario's Long-Term Energy Plan includes increasing the province's renewable power supply from sources like wind, solar and bio-energy by more than 500 per cent, up to 10,700 megawatts.

Additional Resources


“Today our electricity system is stronger and cleaner. We're on track to build a system businesses and families can rely upon while ensuring our children and grandchildren have cleaner air to breathe. We have also taken significant steps to help provide relief for families and businesses as we make this important transformation.”

Brad Duguid

Minister of Energy

“Creating a renewable energy system that takes into account the health implications for our future generations is one of the most important things our government can do. Reducing harmful airborne emissions means better health for Ontarians - today and in the future.”

Deb Matthews

Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

“Coal burning produces air pollutants which have a negative impact on human health. By reducing these harmful emissions, it is expected that the incidence of adverse health effects related to coal burning will also be reduced.”

Dr. Arlene King

Chief Medical Officer of Health

“The link between air quality and lung health is undeniable. Cleaner air means healthier men, women and children in Ontario. It will especially help the 2.4 million Ontarians with lung disease who struggle to breathe every day. We are encouraged by the results of the government's move to cleaner, renewable energy and look toward 2014 as a significant milestone here in the province.”

George Habib

President and CEO, Ontario Lung Association

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