Ontario plans for 250 MW-AC of solar in 2nd phase of large renewables procurement

On Tuesday the government of Ontario announced that it will procure 930 MW-AC of renewable energy in the second phase of its Large Renewable Process (LRP). LRP is an auction process which replaced the province’s feed-in tariff for projects larger than 500 kW.

930 MW-AC is more than double the 455 MW-AC awarded only less than a month ago under LRP phase 1, and the phase 2 Request for Qualifications will be issued by April 1. One reason for the increase in targets may be lower than expected costs.

“Based on results of the first LRP, it is expected that CA$3.3 billion in LRP costs will be removed relative to the 2013 Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP) forecast, saving the typical residential consumer an average of $1.67 per month on their electricity bill over the forecast period,” noted government in a press statement.

The 930 MW-AC will include wind, solar, hydro and bioenergy, and solar is slated for 250 MW-AC of the total, nearly double the 140 MW-AC which was awarded in March. In the first phase solar projects came in at around CA$16 (US$12) per megawatt-hour, within a range of CA$14.15-$17.85 (US$10.70-$13.50).

As was the case in the first phase of the LRP, preference will be given to projects with First Nations and Métis involvement, as well as projects with local support.