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Ontario government seeks 200 MW in smaller units

The Ontario government has released a draft of its third request for renewable energy proposals (RFP), this time for 200 MW of projects less than 20 MW in size. "We want to ensure that small and medium-sized renewable energy projects have a chance to compete," says energy minister Dwight Duncan. The province plans to collect feedback on the RFP and contract before releasing the final version in October. The deadline for proposals is December 15, with contracts to be finalised by March 2006. The government has set a price cap on what it will pay for the power, which it will calculate by taking the first 90 MW of lowest priced bids, adding 10% to their weighted average price and using that as an upper limit when selecting the remainder of the winning projects. If the combined capacity of those projects is less than 200 MW, it says, the ministry may increase the ceiling to 115% of the average price. Ontario currently has an RFP out for 1000 MW of renewables from projects 20 MW in size and larger and last November announced it would buy power from ten projects with a combined capacity of 395 MW, 90% of which was wind power. Combined, the three RFPs could add 1600 MW of new renewables to the province's supply mix, exceeding the government's target of 1350 MW by 2007 and attracting an estimated C$2.5 billion in investment.

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