Archive for 2006 February

Broad coalition formed

Two coalitions to oppose the construction of the Portlands Energy Centre have formed, and now appear to have combined.

A coalition to oppose the construction of the Portlands Energy Centre was created at a meeting of community-group representatives on Thursday, February 16. This coalition was created as a broad umbrella group specifically so that it could embrace existing alternative plans: both those that were for and those that were against a smaller plant on the same site.

At this first meeting, two dozen representatives of a dozen associations and community advocacy groups agreed on the following four principles:

  1. The 550 MW gas-fired generator known as the Portlands Energy Centre and proposed by the Province must be stopped.
  2. Residents of the City of Toronto must be engaged in a meaningful discussion of alternatives.
  3. The primary response must be demand reduction.
  4. Harm reduction (to environment and human health) should be the measure used to compare competing alternatives.

Councillor Paula Fletcher held a meeting in opposition to the Portlands Energy Centre on Wednesday, February 22. At this meeting, the supporters of the smaller plant agreed to broaden their coalition to include all who are opposed to the large plant being pushed by the province.

Given that the steering committee formed at the February 22 meeting significantly overlaps with the steering committee formed at the February 16 meeting, it looks very much like the coalitions are coalescing.

Ontario’s (nuclear) energy future

The Ontario Power Authority has released its report with recommendations on Ontario’s electricity future, and Energy Minister Donna Cansfield has requested input from the community before the Province decides how to proceed. There are a number of concerns for the Green Party in the report, which claims to focus on conservation and renewables but plans investment in nuclear facilities to maintain a 50% contribution from nuclear in the energy mix, while achieving only a 5% reduction in projected demand through conservation, by far a cheaper and less harmful option.

Please write courteous letters to Minister Cansfield expressing your concerns about the high investment in nuclear power and the lack of commitment to conservation. Emailed letters can be sent to the “Ministry of Energy” <email got deleted, sorry>.

Copies can be sent to:
“Minister Cansfield” <email got deleted, sorry>,
“Premier Dalton McGuinty” <email got deleted, sorry>,
“Opposition leader John Tory” <email got deleted, sorry>,
“NDP leader Howard Hampton” <email got deleted, sorry>,
“Green Party of Ontario leader Frank de Jong” <email got deleted, sorry>,
“NDP MPP Peter Tabuns” <email got deleted, sorry>

Please feel free to use part or all of the letter below.     Read more »