Lightning

Energy Policy

Backgrounder August 06, 2021

Municipal Implications

AMO believes the best approach to managing energy is long-term system planning that considers social and environmental policy, as well as financial and economic impacts. In addition to traditional energy sources, AMO advocates for the increased utilization of renewable energy sources like wind, solar and renewable natural gas, among others. AMO also advocates that energy systems must be resilient to changing climate and other system risks. This approach to managing energy is key to supporting Ontario’s economic recovery from COVID-19, and ensuring a stable and reliable energy supply for the future.

AMO continues to advocate for provincial action on a number of key items:

  • Ensure that Local Distribution Companies remain solvent and ready to support Ontario’s economic recovery from COVID-19 and beyond.
  • Provide more practical incentives to municipal governments, local businesses, and citizens to increase participation in energy conservation programs and practices (e.g., net zero construction).
  • Support Municipal Energy Plans and the use of local improvement charges to promote green energy.
  • Support the expansion of programs that provide electricity data to consumers.
  • Wherever locally supported, encourage distributed generation projects to meet local energy needs. Municipal ownership of energy generation and distribution reduces the need to transmit power long distances, creates local jobs, and contributes to a stable energy system.
  • Increase municipal participation and representation in regional energy planning processes to ensure an adequate energy supply for economic and residential growth.

Background

Energy policy in Ontario covers electricity generation, transmission and conservation, as well as energy facilities like renewable energy sources. The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) regulate energy rates and coordinate the electricity system in Ontario, and the Province sets broad energy policy.  

Municipal governments are increasingly interested in energy policy. As large consumers of energy for public facilities, energy prices impact municipal budgets. Also, energy policies impact large industrial consumers and residential customers, both critical ratepayers in the community as well as in areas for potential economic development. Finally, residents are encouraging municipal governments to take action against climate change by decarbonizing energy supplies and reducing energy consumption. Municipal governments need a voice in energy policy to ensure that these economic, environmental, and social concerns are adequately considered.

Contact:

Amber Crawford
Senior Advisor