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February 10, 2006
Statement from Mayor David Miller on provincial proposal for a 550 mega watt gas-fired power plant on Toronto’s waterfront
  
“We must keep the lights on in Toronto. The City has acknowledged this means generating new power here,” Mayor David Miller said today. “However, Energy Minister Donna Cansfield’s move to have a mega-plant constructed on the Toronto waterfront is neither innovative nor progressive in its approach to this critical issue.”

City Council has stated that any new power facility must be co-generation-ready, utilize the existing Hearn plant on Unwin Avenue and be capable of implementing aggressive energy conservation programs with real financial incentives on a realistic timeline.

Mayor Miller has previously stated that a smaller 350 megawatt co-generation plant within the Hearn facility coupled with aggressive conservation initiatives would be a much more palatable solution for the City. It would meet power demands as well as urban revitalization and city-building goals.

“Minister Cansfield has proposed new conservation programs without any funding attached or any meaningful schedule,” Mayor Miller said. “I am concerned this will not be enough to make the important changes we need in our energy-hungry society.

“The people of Toronto are ready to do their part, but we need real incentives and programs that will be effective. We know a smaller plant built in conjunction with the implementation of aggressive energy conservation measures is the best way to go. But if the province intends to force us down the road toward a mega-plant, it should also require the OPA to determine whether the Phase II expansion of their plant will actually be needed if proposed conservation measures succeed.”

The Mayor noted it should be possible to meet both demands for energy and revitalize the waterfront.

“The proposed plant will be adjacent to the long awaited Lake Ontario Park and the future Filmport studios,” he said. “To date, the Province has been a genuine partner on Toronto’s waterfront revitalization. This proposal flies in the face of the progress we are beginning to see emerge.”

Furthermore, Toronto Hydro Energy Services and Constellation Energy yesterday announced a promising plan to start looking at ways to create a new energy plant within the mothballed Hearn facility. Today’s announcement by the Province has effectively stonewalled any such proposal.

Mayor Miller said he is disappointed the Minister’s directive calls for sole-sourcing through the Ontario Power Authority denying Toronto Hydro the opportunity to compete for this significant multi-million dollar investment of public money.


Media contact:

Don Wanagas
Office of the Mayor
416-338-7134


 

 

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