Report suggests Ontario can fight climate change affordably

A Green Ribbon Panel report demonstrates Ontario can fight climate change while growing the economy.

The panel of Canadian environmental and economic leaders was formed early this year to help detail the path forward for Ontario’s electricity system to fight climate change.

The new report, Clean Air, Climate Change and Practical, Innovative Solutions to Grow the Economy and Reduce GHG emissions in Ontario, looks at the province’s history of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG)
emissions and uses these lessons to create a plan to meet its GHG reduction targets.

Senior Manager, Policy and Energy Innovation Andrew Thiele said Ontario’s investments in nuclear will help it meet greenhouse gas reduction goals by 2030 through electrification of all sectors.

“They are really well-positioned to help the emissions in other industries like transportation, which is one of the largest contributors, as well as industrial heating,” he said.

Two more reports are due out this fall, with the final report in October suggesting government policy directions.

“Ontario has been a worldwide leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions since we eliminated our dependence on coal-fired generation in 2015, which was made possible in large part by leveraging Ontario’s nuclear assets,” said James Scongack, chair of the Green Ribbon Panel. “Now more than ever it’s time for Canada to continue that leadership role. We must do more to show the world that GHG reduction is not only possible, but cheaper than alternative solutions.”

An additional 37 TWh of carbon-free electricity, or 25 per cent more than is in use today, is required to meet Ontario’s emission reduction goals.

The reports said thanks to Ontario’s low-cost nuclear generation, the smart integration of a portfolio of low-carbon emitting technologies could be 28 per cent less costly than Ontario’s system today, and
half the cost of a renewables-based alternative.