Introduction

On June 10, 2016, Ontario's minister of energy issued a directive to the Independent Electricity System Operator ("IESO") regarding upgrades to existing renewable projects, the Conservation First Framework and support programs. It is the latest in a series of directives that the minister has issued to the IESO and its predecessor, the Ontario Power Authority.

Summary of the Directive's Key Points

Upgrades to Existing Renewable Projects

The IESO is directed to increase the Large Renewable Procurement (LRP) II procurement target to 980 MW, and to explore opportunities to procure additional generation resulting from technical upgrades to and optimization of existing renewable generation assets.

Conservation First Framework

The IESO is directed to design, fund and deliver, in consultation with licensed electricity distributors, two new centrally-delivered Conservation and Demand Management (CDM) programs, both of which must be implemented by the end of the Fall of 2016:

  1. a Multi-Distributor Program, a province-wide pay-for-performance CDM program for customers with multiple locations across several licensed services areas; and
  2. a Whole Home Pilot Program, a province-wide whole home CDM pilot program for residential

The IESO is directed to deliver the new centrally-delivered CDM programs in coordination with natural gas distributors, where appropriate.

Support Programs

The IESO is directed to increase the 2016 budget for the Partnership Stream, the Project Development Stream, the Aboriginal Community Energy Plans (ACEP), the Aboriginal Renewable Energy Network (AREN) and the Education and Capacity Building (ECB) Program (collectively, the “Support Programs”) from $10 million to $14 million. This is to be achieved by allocating $4 million in unspent Support Program funds from the 2015 budget to the $10 million annual Support Programs budget for 2016.

A complete copy of the directive can be found at the following link: http://www.ieso.ca/Documents/Ministerial-Directives/20160610-Directive-LRPII-ConservationFramework-SupportPrograms.pdf