News & Updates

Potential Impacts of Ontario Government’s Plans for Feed-in Tariff Program

July 17, 2018

Ontario held a Provincial Election on June 7, 2018, and the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario (PC) won with a clear majority. A key part of the PC platform was to reduce electricity prices for consumers by 12%.

Prior to the election, the PC’s stated that one of the ways they would accomplish the reduction would be to “cancel energy contracts that are in the pre-construction phase” including projects under the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) program which is managed by the provincial regulator, the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO).To date, Solar Flow-Through Funds has been developing and operating solar PV projects exclusively under the FIT program.

On July 13, 2018, the new Government issued an Order in Council containing the Minister of Energy’s Directive “to immediately take all steps necessary to wind down all FIT 2, 3, 4 and 5 contracts where the IESO has not issued Notice to Proceed (“NTP”). An NTP is issued for a contract when it is ready for construction.

Legislation that clarifies what is specifically meant regarding “all steps necessary to wind down” the pre-NTP contracts is expected in the upcoming weeks.

The Government’s actions will not affect limited partners’ (i.e. the investors) of Solar Flow-Through with respect to their eligibility of prior investors’ tax deductions. Assuming the pre-NTP contracts are to be cancelled, Solar Flow-Through will continue to develop the remaining 35 projects that are post-NTP and pre-operating. The amount of investment required from future investors will obviously be significantly less than if the pre-NTP contracts were not to be cancelled.

Solar Flow-Through has joint equity interest with various community partners for the vast majority of the 218 projects that are pre-NTP which include First Nations, Metis, community co-operatives and municipalities. Solar Flow-Through is working with these partners to preserve as many projects as possible. If the projects that are pre-NTP are cancelled, there is a provision in the FIT Contract that provides for cost recovery to the owner payable by the IESO.

Solar Flow-Through is working with lawyers and government relations firms to protect our interests in the pre-NTP contracts to the extent that it is possible. Additionally, Solar Flow-Through is pursuing solar and other renewable energy projects outside of the FIT program that may have similar risk and investment returns as the FIT projects.

Following is a summary of the status of Solar Flow-Through’s FIT projects:

Status# of ProjectsSize of Projects in mW (1)
Post-NTP and pre-Operating3519.5

(1) Total size of projects in megawatts DC

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