Ontario's "Feed-In Tariff" Program (FIT)
The Feed-In Tariff (FIT) Program and the Micro-FIT Program were created as part of Ontario’s Green Energy and Green Economy Act in 2009. They encouraged and promoted greater use of renewable energy sources including on-shore wind, waterpower, renewable biomass, biogas, landfill gas and solar photovoltaic (PV) for electricity generating projects in Ontario. The FIT and Micro-FIT Programs offered fixed purchase rates over a 20-year term to renewable energy providers like GRECo.
Along with thousands of Ontarians, GRECo and its members took advantage of these programs, which resulted in the displacement of countless tons of CO2 emissions, and the creation of thousands of skilled jobs in the field of energy. The program also plays a role in offsetting the energy that was previously generated by Ontario’s coal-fired plants, which are now entirely shut down. That is good news for our environment and great news for our lungs – and our climate.
Applications to the FIT and Micro-FIT programs were closed in 2017. The 2017 Ontario Long-Term Energy Plan expressed a commitment to supporting the transition to Net Metering as a replacement to the FIT program. In addition, at the start of 2018 Ontario government is considering a new incentive program to help home and business owners install solar panels on their rooftops. The new program would rely on proceeds from the cap and trade program rather than adding cost to electricity bills.
Stay tuned for new upcoming possibilities in small-scale renewable generation, including net metering opportunities. Meanwhile, GRECo’s FIT solar projects continue to produce renewable energy and healthy revenues at Airpark and Silvercreek.