Folks outside Ontario’s electricity system can be excused for mistaking the provincial government’s revised Long Term Energy Plan (LTEP), issued earlier this week and reviewed here, as Ontario’s energy plan. As I argued previously, the LTEP is an election platform document rather than a program that drives action. Those interested in watching Ontario’s real energy plan need to look elsewhere.
Ontario’s real energy plan today is the ad hoc stream of consciousness on the spot guidance that the energy minister of the day bestows upon the agencies he controls.
In the case of Crown corporations OPG and Hydro One, they receive the minister’s guidance through Directives and also by way of ongoing direct supervision. Here are the Directives issued to OPG and Hydro One. The process by which the minister grants clearance for decisions and announcements is cloaked in secrecy.
Another way to track Ontario’s actual energy plan is to watch the projects getting approvals, such as these wind power projects checking off some of their last approval requirements.
Another way to track Ontario’s actual energy plan is to watch appointments to key positions within government-controlled agencies. Here is a recent commentary on appointment practices at the Ontario Energy Board.