CAUTION: We have been advised that fraudulent emails with a modified domain name have been sent by a source purporting to be from Aird & Berlis LLP. These communications are not legitimate and are not from Aird & Berlis LLP. Disregard any such emails and do not engage with the sender or the email in any way. Please report the attempted fraud by contacting the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre and by emailing Aird & Berlis LLP at

Back to all blog posts

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Practice & Procedure | Climate Change / Renewables

Oct 12, 2018

Ontario Repeals Green Energy Act, 2009

By Jonathan Yantzi

The Ontario Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines recently introduced legislation to repeal the Green Energy Act, 2009 and its regulations. The Green Energy Act, 2009 was enacted ten years ago to expand renewable energy production, encourage energy conservation and create jobs in the renewable energy sector. In addition to repealing the Green Energy Act, 2009, Bill 34, Green Energy Repeal Act, 2018, also includes changes to the Planning Act and Environmental Protection Act that increase the power of the province and municipalities to reject renewable energy projects.

The repeal of the Green Energy Act, 2009 will eliminate the Renewable Energy Facilitation Office located within the Ministry of Energy to help proponents navigate renewable energy project approvals. Also repealed will be the requirement that government facilities be constructed, acquired, operated and managed in an environmentally-responsible way, including the use of renewable energy sources, energy and water efficient planning and design, and the transparent reporting of energy and water use and GHG emissions.

Bill 34 re-enacts a limited number of provisions of the Green Energy Act, 2009 in the Electricity Act, 1998 that permit the government to create regulations in a number of areas. Until such regulations are enacted under the Electricity Act, 1998, however, these re-enacted provisions will have little effect. These sections provide for the creation of regulations:

  • To allow for the designation of renewable energy projects, sources and testing projects for the purposes of removing barriers to, and to promote opportunities for, the use of renewable energy sources, and to promote access to transmission systems and distribution systems for proponents of renewable energy projects;
  • To require an electricity, natural gas or water distributor to make data available with respect to the consumption or use of electricity, gas or water to persons required to report on energy consumption and water use;
  • To allow for the use of designated goods, services and technologies in such circumstances, despite any restriction imposed at law (i.e., the “clothesline law”); and
  • To require a public agency to prepare and submit an energy conservation and demand management plan and to achieve targets and meet energy and environmental standards, including standards for energy conservation and demand management.

Bill 34 amends several provisions of the Planning Act that will empower the province and municipalities to reject renewable energy projects by:

  • Adding a new clause that provides that there is no appeal to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) in respect of a refusal or failure by a municipality or planning board to adopt or approve requested amendments to an official plan that proposes to authorize a renewable energy generation facility, project, testing facility or testing project;
  • Adding a new clause that provides that there is no appeal to the LPAT in respect of an application for an amendment to a zoning by-law if the amendment proposes to permit a renewable energy undertaking;
  • Ending exemptions from subdivision control and part-lot control for certain transactions entered into for the purposes of renewable energy generation facilities or renewable energy projects; and
  • Ending exemptions for renewable energy undertakings from a number of other requirements, including the application of policy statements, provincial plans, official plans, demolition control by-laws and others.

In addition, Bill 34 amends the Environmental Protection Act to enable the government to refuse to approve renewable energy projects where demand for the electricity that would be generated by the project has not been demonstrated to the satisfaction of the government.

Bill 34 is currently awaiting second reading in the Ontario legislature.

Areas of Expertise

Related Blogs

Posted in: Facilities | Energy Policy | Ontario | Climate Change / Renewables

Insights EnergyInsider
New Ontario Government Introduces Hydro One Accountability Act By Peter A. Dalglish Jul 24, 2018 On July 16, 2018, the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines Greg Rickford introduced Bill 2, Urgent Priorities Act, 2018, into the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. The bill marks the first major piece of legislation tabled by the new Progressive Conservative government, and direct...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Facilities | Ontario | Climate Change / Renewables

Insights EnergyInsider
Ontario Cancels Renewable Energy Projects and Introduces White Pines Wind Project Termination Act, 2018 By Stan Fedun Jul 19, 2018 On July 5, 2018, Ontario’s newly-appointed Minister of Energy, Development and Mines, Greg Rickford, issued a Directive (1003/2018) pursuant to subsections 25.32(5) and (11) of the Electricity Act, 1998 to the Independent Electricity System Operator to i...

Posted in: Nuclear | Ontario | Energy Policy | Green Energy | Climate Change / Renewables

Insights EnergyInsider
New Ontario Government Outlines Plan for Energy, Gas in First Throne Speech By Peter A. Dalglish Jul 13, 2018 The incoming Progressive Conservative provincial government delivered its first Speech from the Throne on July 12, 2018, in the Ontario Legislature. The speech set out the government’s agenda for the first legislative session of the 42nd Parliament of Ontario, which was officially ...

Posted in: Ontario | Energy Policy | Climate Change / Renewables

Insights EnergyInsider
Green Ontario Fund To Be Wound Down By Incoming Government By David Stevens and Stan Fedun Jun 28, 2018 During the 2018 Ontario general election, Doug Ford and Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives made a number of promises and statements related to energy policy and their plans if elected, including a promise to end Ontario’s cap and trade program. On June 15, 2018, Premier-Designate Ford announced ...