• IESO Discusses Enhancements to the Feed-in-Tariff Program
  • April 7, 2015 | Author: Christopher J. Perez
  • Law Firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP - Toronto Office
  • Yesterday, the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) held an ‘industry dialogue’ meeting in Toronto, during which it discussed and sought feedback on the upcoming enhancements to the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) program that were proposed in the discussion paper posted in early December.

    At the meeting, the IESO gave a brief overview of its proposals and discussed industry comments, including:

    - Priority points for price bid-down - IESO quelled criticism of the bid-down option by explaining that the prices published in the price schedules are not necessarily correct for each possible project, and that a bid-down allows projects with lower development costs to take advantage and bid the lower price that their project can accommodate. Commenters expressed concern about the negative effects of a ‘race to the bottom’ that pricing would have on the industry; the IESO is considering having a floor, or a limited number of price down ‘buckets’ (e.g. 0-5%, 5-10%, etc.)

    - Removing Project Type Priority Points - IESO explained that removing these Priority Points, but keeping Contract Capacity Set-Asides (CCSAs), would prevent projects with municipal, co-op or aboriginal participation to dominate the procurement and would enable cost-savings by broadening the range of potential ownership models. IESO also heard comments regarding reallocating the CCSAs to a more even distribution as between municipalities, co-ops and aboriginal groups.

    - Removing certain renewable fuel types - Several commenters noted potential with certain fuel types (e.g., biogas, biomass, etc.), but noted certain difficulties that the usual developers of such projects (e.g. farms, co-ops, etc.) face in obtaining a FIT contract. The IESO invited formal comment submissions on this topic in order for them to consider whether to maintain such renewable fuel types in the program.