This is an editorial from the August 13th edition of The National Post. Wind doesn’t work. And, it’s taking Ontario farther down the path to total failure (did you know that Ontario’s current debt stands at more than $230 BILLION?)
Here is the post:
National Post editorial board: Ontario’s green dreams
National Post editorial board Aug 13, 2011 – 10:41 AM ET | Last Updated: Aug 12, 2011 4:45 PM ET
On Thursday, the European Union filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization claiming that the huge subsidies Ontario is offering developers of alternate energy violate international trade rules. If the EU complaint is upheld, Ontario will have to abandon its Green Energy Act of 2009 — since green energy isn’t economically feasible on a large scale without some form of government subsidy, either in Ontario or anywhere else. By that time, the plan will have cost Ontario taxpayers and consumers billions of dollars.
Over the last 12 months, the Ontario Liberals already have had to abandon plans to build huge wind-power turbine farms in the Great Lakes, cancel construction of a natural gas-fired power plant in Oakville, and admit there is no practical way to connect to the provincial power grid all the solar panels they encouraged farmers and landowners to erect. That means the tens of millions of dollars they spent subsidizing the building of solar collectors was wasted — as were the tens of millions that private landowners invested with the promise of energy income when the government’s scheme was realized. (On Thursday, it was reported that Silfab Ontario, a solar-panel maker that’s just a few months old, already has a huge backlog of unbought panels and may have to lay off workers.)
Ironically, the Europeans have been as guilty of magical thinking on green energy as Ontarians — maybe more so. Notwithstanding their WTO complaint, the EU has supplied its own subsidies to wind, solar and bio fuel. However, their budgets ran out before Ontario’s did. So, at least in part, their complaint to the WTO is an attempt to beggar Ontario in the same way that their decades of free spending have already beggared them.
In responding to the EU challenge, Ontario Energy Minister Brad Duguid insisted it was a sign of the Europeans’ envy. The EU, we are told, sees “the thousands of jobs being created here and the billions of dollars of investment flowing into Ontario.” But if such a fantasy were truly unfolding, then the industry would need no subsidies — and there wouldn’t be any EU complaint.
As Stéphane Dion showed us at the federal level, green dreams die hard. Mr. Duguid may realize the same lesson when the province’s election comes on October 6.