Niagara Falls, ON – Environmental Defence and the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE) applaud Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli’s announcement today to add more renewable energy to the electricity supply and support community energy plans.
“This sends a clear signal that Ontario intends to remain a leader on renewable energy,” said Gillian McEachern of Environmental Defence. “Adding at least 900 megawatts of renewable energy over the next four years is enough clean power to run over 1.2 million air conditioners on a hot summer day. This means Ontario can generate less energy from polluting sources, like coal and gas, which fuel global warming.”
 
The groups urged the province to increase its long-term target for renewable energy through the review of the Long-Term Energy Plan underway now.
 
“Our doctors are very pleased Ontario is growing the renewables sector: wind and solar power are extremely safe. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for nuclear energy,” said Gideon Forman of CAPE. “Doctors urge the government to phase-out nuclear so the renewables we all want can be accommodated on the grid.”  
 
The groups are also encouraged by the support announced today for community energy plans, which can enable municipalities to determine ways to save energy and participate in renewable energy projects. Changes to the process for procuring large renewable energy projects, however, need to encourage better community participation while ensuring a robust and diverse clean energy sector.
 
“Ontario’s Green Energy and Green Economy Act made the province a destination of choice for solar and wind companies, in large part due to the feed in tariff program. We hope this new approach will be designed to expand the number of projects and players in this rapidly growing sector, rather than constrain it,” added McEachern. “Ontario needs to continue to build a robust and diverse green energy sector that creates jobs and helps Ontario do its part to fight climate change.”
ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all. (www.environmentaldefence.ca)
The Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE): With over 5,800 members, CAPE is a national physicians’ organization that protects human health by protecting the planet. (http://www.cape.ca)
 
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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
 
Naomi Carniol, Environmental Defence, ncarniol@environmentaldefence.ca 416-323-9521 ext. 258; 416-570-2878 (cell)
 
Gideon Forman, CAPE, 647-703-5957 (cell)