Ontario government launches voluntary clean energy credit registry


The Ontario government is developing a voluntary clean energy credit (CEC) registry, announced Todd Smith, minister of energy.

Voluntary CECs are certificates that each represent 1 megawatt-hour (MWh) of clean electricity that has been generated from a non-emitting source, such as solar, wind, bioenergy, hydroelectric, and nuclear power. Businesses will be able to to voluntarily purchase and retire these CECs to meet their corporate sustainability goals and demonstrate that their electricity has been sourced from a non-emitting resource. A CEC registry could return funds raised through the purchase of CECs to Ontario ratepayers and could support future clean energy generation in the province.

“A CEC registry could enable more Ontario consumers to choose wind and solar energy to power their operations and help companies meet their ESG targets,” said Nicholas Gall, CanREA’s director, Ontario and Distributed Energy Resources.

CanREA has a net-zero target to be achieved by 2050, and reports that at the end of 2021, at the end of 2020 had approximately 2,399MW of major solar energy capacity and ranked 22nd in the world for installed solar energy capacity. In 2021 Canada saw 288MW of new utility-scale solar energy commissioned, and CanREA projects that 2022 and 2023 will see significantly more growth in the deployment of wind and solar energy.

The Ontario government has directed the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) to research and report back on the design of a provincial CEC registry, that would give businesses more choice in how they achieve their corporate sustainability goals.

The IESO will deliver its report by July 4, 2022, and the government intends to have the registry available by January 2023.

“A voluntary clean energy credit market could be a key tool to help Ontario electricity customers realize their clean energy preferences,” says Lesley Gallinger, President and CEO of the IESO.

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