Voters Support Renewable Energy

The voters in Ontario have spoken. They elected a Liberal majority government. The Liberals have been responsible for starting Ontario on a sustainable energy path, adding solar, wind, biogas and new waterpower facilities. And the voters have delivered a stunning rebuke to the PC party, reducing both their share of the popular vote, and their number of seats. The PC party blamed renewable energy for higher power prices, and said they would tear up the Green Energy Act.

Electricity prices were a significant issue in the election campaign. While the PC’s trumpeted loudly that wind and solar contracts caused the power prices to go up, the reality was different, with several studies showing that renewable energy made up only a miniscule portion of the increase in rates. The bulk of the rate increase is attributed to nuclear generation, as old plant operate less efficiently, and have needs for extremely costly refurbishments.

Of course the PC’s claim that they would be able to rein in electricity price increases was ludicrous, especially given their policy positions. They were the only party to support the construction of new nuclear plants, despite their past cost overruns, and unknowable costs. There is simply no way you can build new nuclear, and get lower electricity prices. It is impossible.

This isn’t the first time renewable energy has earned votes. It was an important issue in the 2012 presidential election, where Obama won Colorado and Iowa, both big wind states. Obama supported renewable energy, and Romney was opposed.

Perhaps it is time for the PC’s to look at evidence, rather than simply believe their own erroneous rhetoric. And the evidence shows that renewable energy is cost effective compared to other new sources of generation. And renewable energy has the support of voters.

Leave a Reply