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April 20, 2016
A Note from Dave Kelly, Vice-Chair of CanSIA Board of Directors
Good afternoon,

Spring has now sprung across most of Canada and nature is not the only one with growth at the top of the to-do list.

The Federal Government's 2016 budget, promised renewed support for a "clean growth economy" with language that indicates a strong focus on green technology investment, which encompasses a wide range of energy and climate change initiatives including the $2 billion Low Carbon Trust and $1 billion in support of growing Canada's cleantech sector.

The Alberta budget released last week committed significant investment from the province's carbon levy into renewable energies including $3.4 billion for large scale renewable energy, bioenergy and technology; and $645 million for Energy Efficiency Alberta, a new provincial agency that will support increasing energy efficiency for homes and businesses.

As policy-makers move their focus from the policy-level to budget and program, a great deal of collaboration is required with industry and stakeholders to ensure the realization of their ambitious policy objectives. The upcoming federal climate change consultation and ongoing Alberta Renewable Energy Program (REP) design and Micro-Generation Regulation review (to name but a few) are critical opportunities deserving of the industry's investment over the next year. CanSIA will continue to rely on the support and engagement of our Members to enable us to seize these opportunities to secure a strong future for solar.

When you receive emails in the coming weeks to renew your CanSIA Membership or to become a new Member in advance of the next Membership year beginning on July 1st, I hope you will act as quickly as my company will to express our support for CanSIA and the important work they will do to continue to build the momentum for our industry.

Please read on for some other policy, regulatory and market updates from the CanSIA Executive Team: 

Kindest regards,

David Kelly
CanSIA, Vice-Chair of Board of Directors 

Upcoming Webinars
The next CanSIA Network webinar will be "Climate Policy in Ontario", a Policy and Market Development Network webinar: 

Date: Thursday, May 26 2016
Time: 11:30 to 12:30 Mountain / 1:30 to 2:30pm Eastern
Registration: Online registration.

Notice: The April 28th, "Federal Tax Enablers & Incentives for Solar" webinar has now been postponed to a later date. Registrants will be informed of the new timing once rescheduled.
 CanSIA members can register for webinars here.

Non-members who are interested in these webinars should consider joining CanSIA. More information about our member benefits and services is available here
CanSIA Member Engagement and Consultation
Continuing CanSIA's ongoing engagement and consultation with Members CanSIA is launching a number of new Member Forums, including:  
  • Interconnection Costs Forum of the Utilities & Regulatory Affairs Network.
  • Solar Jobs Forum of the Communications Network.
  • Carbon Pricing Forum of the Utilities & Regulatory Affairs Network.
  • Solar-Friendly Building Code Forum of the Utilities & Regulatory Affairs Network.
  • Solar in Canada's North Forum of the Policy & Market Development Network.
  • Solar & Federal Tax Policy Forum of the Utilities & Regulatory Affairs.
Participation in CanSIA's Forums are exclusive opportunities to Corporate and Supporter 1 Members.  Eligible Members may receive further information on the CanSIA website. 

Policy & Market Development
OntarioOntario finishes Q4 2015 with ~2,500 MW AC of Cumulative Installed Capacity 
Bright Bright Spots for Solar in 2016 Federal Budget
This March, the Federal Government unveiled its 2016 budget, promising renewed support for "a clean growth economy". Dubbed Growing the Middle Class, the Liberal's economic game plan outlined initiatives aimed at supporting middle income earners, renewing the country's infrastructure, and - of particular importance to the solar industry - the overall language of the budget indicates a strong focus on green technology investment, which encompasses a wide range of energy and climate change initiatives.

"Clean technologies are a key component of the Government's approach to promoting sustainable economic growth and will play a critical role in Canada's transformation into a low-carbon economy," it states, adding, "As a first step, Budget 2016 proposes to provide early strategic funding for clean technology projects to take advantage of this growth opportunity and enhance environmental performance" Committed spending includes:
  • $2 billion Low Carbon Trust.
  • $1 billion in support of cleantech.
  • $130 million for cleantech research, development and demonstration.
  • $10.7 million for off-grid renewables to displace diesel.
  • Initiatives to improve clean energy statistics and reporting and building code energy performance.
AlbertaAlberta's Budget 2016 creates jobs, decarbonizes and diversifies energy sector
The Honourable Joe Ceci, Alberta's Minister of Finance yesterday released Budget 2016 which included revenues of $9.6 billion to be collected through the province's carbon levy, a price paid for the combustion of fuels that produce greenhouse gas emissions.  In addition to support for households, businesses and communities to adjust to the carbon price, these funds will be used to create jobs and diversify the province's energy sector:
  • $3.4 billion for large scale renewable energy, bioenergy and technology;
  • $645 million for Energy Efficiency Alberta, a new provincial agency that will support increasing energy efficiency for homes and businesses; and
  • $2.2 billion for green infrastructure like transit.

Further information on how this Budget will diversify the energy industry and energy markets is available online.
MinisterOntario Minister of Energy Issues Directive on Large Renewable Procurement 2 and FIT 5
Ontario's Minister of Energy, the Honourable Bob Chiarelli, issued a Ministerial Directive to provide direction to the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) to proceed with new procurements for solar and renewable electricity under the Large Renewable Procurement (LRP 2) and Feed-in Tariff (FIT 5) programs. Highlights include the following:

1. Procurement targets:  LRP 2 will procure 250 MW of solar (out of 930 MW total). FIT 5 will procure a base of 150 MW, any attrition from previously issued Capacity Allocation Exempt contracts, plus any MW not procured from the 2016 microFIT procurement target of 50 MW (CanSIA estimates this will amount to a total of approximately 240 MW).

2. Procurement timelines: LRP 2: The final RFQ to be posted no later than August 1, 2016. Contracts will be issued no later than May 1, 2018. FIT 5: Application window will be opened prior to November 1, 2016.

The full text of the Ministerial Directive is available online.
IESOOntario IESO Announces Proposed Changes to the microFIT Program for Mid-2016
The Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator has announced that they are intending to make changes to the microFIT Program for implementation in mid-2016. The new version of the program will be called microFIT 4.0 and will include:
  • A new fuel type/price category will be created for solar photovoltaic (PV) rooftop applications that are 6 kilowatts (kW) or smaller.  The current 2016 price for solar PV rooftop will apply to projects larger than 6 kW.
  • In-series metering will be allowed if permitted by the local distribution company.
  • Projects will be required to be connected within 180 days of receiving an Application Approval Notice.
  • Requirement for all applicants to provide a signed and notarized declaration confirming they have access to their My microFIT Homepage, understand the microFIT rules, and other aspects of the program
  • Provisions will be introduced related to payments when the microFIT contract is in breach.
More information on the implementation of these changes is available on the microFIT website.

Utilities & Regulatory Affairs
SolarSolar Ontario 2016 Pre-Conference Workshop to Examine Behind-the-Meter Generation
"Ensuring Success Behind-the-Meter" is a half-day workshop that will examine the critical policy design and implementation issues for solar companies participating in the future behind-the-meter generation market (with and without storage) to determine what factors will ultimately affect the scale and pace of development of this market sector.  The afternoon will be divided into three interactive sections each facilitated by Jim MacDougall, President, Compass Renewable Energy Consulting Inc. on customer, utilities and solar business model considerations.  This workshop will be invaluable for all professionals intending to participate in any manner in the net-metering based business in addition to policy-makers, regulators, utilities and other stakeholders. 

For further information, please visit the Solar Ontario 2016 website.

StorageOntario's IESO Releases Energy Storage Report, IEA-RETD examines Storage Policy
Ontario's Independent Electric System Operator (IESO) have published their findings on a review of their lessons learned from their procurement of 50 MW of storage and the potential opportunities and challenges for energy storage providers in Ontario. More specifically, it identifies the operational and reliability system needs brought about by changes to the generation mix over the next few years and the potential for energy storage technologies to address those needs.  IEA-RETD also released a report on storage in March entitled:  "Policies for Storing Renewable Energy".

NewNew Report reviews Self-Consumption Regulations
A new report from the International Energy Agency's Photovoltaic Power Systems (PVPS) entitled "A methodology for the Analysis of PV Self-Consumption Policies" provides a comparative analysis of existing mechanisms supporting the self-consumption of electricity in key countries all over the world and to highlight the challenges and opportunities associated to their developments. Mechanisms promoting self-consumption of PV electricity are based on the idea that PV electricity will be used first for local consumption and that all this electricity should not be injected into the grid. The part of the bill that can be compensated depends on several options that are used vary, depending on countries or regions.

RegulatoryRegulatory delays undermine economic potential of renewable energy industry
A new report from the International Energy Agency's Renewable Energy Technology Deployment (RETD) entitled " Documenting the costs of regulatory delays (RE-DELAYS)" examines costs to renewable developers of permitting delays.   Lack of clarity and transparency in existing regulation or development of new policies continues to result in significant costs and delays to entry for (new) renewable technologies.  Uncertainty surrounding implementation of governments' commitments towards support for renewable energy, competing government objectives at times, as well as costly and lengthy consultation processes, grid connection costs and grid access uncertainty are all identified as key issues.

Stories We Are Following
Join CanSIA's Member Networks!
CanSIA is pleased to announce the introduction of our new Member Networks & Forums platform, which will replace the Caucus/Working Group model we've used for the past five years. The Networks and Forums will optimize member resources when engaging and collaborating with CanSIA while providing members with a new avenue for accessing research, analytics, and updates from the executive team. Our new structure will also serve to maximize our advocacy impact through stronger cooperation and interaction.

Professionals employed by a Corporate or Supporter Member are eligible to participate in one or more of the following three CanSIA Networks, and can sign up here:
  1. Policy & Market Development Network
  2. Utility & Regulatory Affairs Network
  3. Communications Network
Join CanSIA as a member to increase your access to policy forums, working groups, market research and policy advocacy events.

Contact Lisa Hatina (, Business Development and Member Relations Manager to learn more about the significant opportunities and benefits that CanSIA members receive, can participate in and support in our three core service areas:
  • Policy and Advocacy;
  • Industry Capacity Development; and,
  • Profile Building and Networking.