to build power plant on Toronto's waterfront
Published September 18, 2006
Toronto Mayor David Miller and residents in the city's east
end have lost their fight to stop a large power plant from
being built on Toronto's waterfront.
The Ontario Power Authority inked a deal last week to
purchase power from the Portlands Energy Centre, which
will see the construction of a 550-megawatt gas-fired
generating station on the shore of Lake Ontario.
The $730-million plant will be located near downtown
Toronto in the city's Portlands district, close to the
now-defunct Hearn generating station.
Officials refuse to say how much the owners of the generating
plant, TransCanada Energy Ltd. and Ontario Power Generation,
will receive for the electricity they produce, saying
that's commercially sensitive information.
One source told CBC that the government has guaranteed
them a fixed return every month. If electricity prices
rise, the company will receive less of a subsidy, and
if the price falls, the owners will get more.
The owners expect to make a seven to eight per cent return
on their investment, the source said.
Mayor David Miller had thrown his support behind a rival
bid by Constellation Energy, hoping a smaller plant would
be built in the area and the difference in energy would
be made up through conservation.
Miller and area residents wanted to see the area developed
as housing and parkland.
However, the agency managing the province's power supply,
the Independent Electricity System Operator, warned that
Toronto faces rolling blackouts as early as the summer
of 2008 if the city fails to find new energy sources.
The generating plant is scheduled to begin running at
half the generating capacity, about 330 megawatts, by
the summer of 2008.
It will be shut down that winter while construction is
completed, then reopened the following summer as a fully
operational 550-megawatt station.