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Subject: Our power future is being decided right now!
What should Ontario’s future electricity system look like? Should we continue to rely overwhelmingly on a few gigantic nuclear stations or should we accelerate the development of a flexible and efficient energy system that relies on renewable and community-based energy sources?
This is the question the Ontario Government is seeking to decide in its review of the province’s Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP). The government’s discussion paper on the plan contains some encouraging ideas, including putting the acquisition of all cost effective efficiency and conservation measures before spending more dollars on new electricity generation projects.
But it is also perpetuates the myth – despite reams of real-world evidence to the contrary – that nuclear is a low-cost energy source and it ignores the many risks associated with nuclear power, from radiation leaksto nuclear accidents and how to store tonnes of radioactive waste for a million years.
The discussion paper offers support for renewable power but also makes it clear that efforts to expand the use of zero-emission energy sources may proceed more slowly in the future.
These are big issues and they speak to the fact that Ontario is at a real turning point: With a changing economy and fast evolving technology leading to declining demand for power in this province, we need new answers not old solutions.
It is extremely important that the government hear from you on this issue. Interest groups like nuclear power companies will be lobbying the government hard to maintain the status quo where efficiency and renewable power are treated as second-class options.
The best way to respond is by making a short submission through the Environmental Bill of Rights registry. It’s as simple as filling out a web form and you can get help crafting your submission or use a pre-written submission at www.greenprosperity.ca/ltep. The government is also running a series of “open house” meetings across the province. You can get times, dates and locations at www.greenprosperity.ca/ltep as well. It doesn’t have to be a big time commitment: Just drop by and fill out any comment sheets, etc. and try to encourage others to attend as well.
Make your voice heard and make sure Ontario moves forward, not backward!