October 25, 2018
Opening Message from Director of Policy & Market Development, Patrick Bateman
E arl ier this week, the Federal Government released initial details of the Federal Carbon Pricing Backstop. The backstop will include a "F uel Charge" and an "Output Based Pricing System" (OBPS) (for larger emitters). The Backstop will be adopted by a number of jurisdictions who have chosen to do so. Most importantly, the Backstop will also be applied in jurisdictions who have not developed their own compliant approach (or jurisdictions who move to cancel a compliant approach). There has been much media coverage, if you read only one article - try that of David Roberts in Vox for a good take . (Also to follow the topic closer, follow @DaleBeugin and @MarkTCameron on Twitter).
 
Why does Carbon Pricing matter for solar energy? Carbon Pricing allocates the societal cost of reducing emissions to those that cause the emissions. When the cost for emitters to not emit becomes less than the cost to emit, new actions and behaviours are incentivized including the adoption of new technologies, products and services. In principle, it incentivizes fuel-switching from fossil fuels to non-emitting energy sources. Demand for solar energy increases in response to Carbon Pricing.
 
While CanSIA welcomes the initial information on the Backstop released this week, some big questions remain -especially around the treatment of electricity in the Output Based Pricing System. In response to feedback from stakeholders including CanSIA in partnership with the Canadian Council on Renewable Electricity (CanCORE), Environment & Climate Change Canada has decreased the standard that would apply to new natural gas-fired electricity generation (from 420 t/GWh to 370 t/GWh). A lower standard means a greater price signal that will shift investment from emitting toward non-emitting energy sources at all market scales (i.e. residential, commercial, community, utility etc).
 
CanSIA will continue to advocate for Carbon Pricing design and implementation with stringency that is consistent with the level of ambition required to meet our national electricity and emissions targets. Later today, I will appear before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development. Updates from this will be provided in an upcoming webinar mentioned below. 
Please read on for further updates from the CanSIA Executive Team. 

Policy & Market Development:
Utilities & Regulatory Affairs:
Policy & Market Development
Solar Ontario: Leading Energy and Solar Industry Speakers ConfirmedSolONT
CanSIA's Solar Ontario Conference is just around the corner, taking place on November 14, 2018 at the Hilton Mississauga and you won't want to miss this must attend event! With a new Ontario government in place, it will be more important than ever to understand how the political landscape and market dynamics are shifting to ensure that your business is best positioned to respond accordingly in this new environment. CanSIA has confirmed a number of  leading energy and solar industry speakers to share ideas and insights regarding the current political landscape and to discuss how to create customer value and creative technology solutions. Learn more about the  program and  sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities.

Register for upcoming CanSIA Member Policy & Market Update WebinarsWebinars

Register to join the CanSIA team and your fellow members by webinar for a policy and market update on solar market opportunities in Alberta.
 
NEXT WEBINAR - CanSIA Market Update: Alberta (Thursday, Nov 1, 2018, 11am to 12:30pm Mountain Time).  Click here to register. 
 
In 2019, the cumulative solar electricity generation capacity in the province will exceed 50 MW (and 150 MW in 2021), up from less than 10 MW in 2015. Attend this webinar to gain an understanding of what is driving this growth and other key factors affecting future demand including: community participation in solar electricity generation; incentives for net-billing projects; utility-scale procurement; the design and implementation of the capacity market; rate and tariff design; and much more.

Registration is also open for these upcoming member webinars:
CanSIA Policy Update: Federal
November 22, 2018
from 1:00 PM -2:00 PM EST
CanSIA Market Update: Nova Scotia
January 24, 2019
from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM AST

Nova Scotia Solar Industry Event set for December 4 in HalifaxNSSolarEvent

On December 4th, 2018, CanSIA and the Nova Scotia Department of Energy and Mines (DoEM) will be co-hosting a one-day solar industry event. The event will take place in Halifax accommodating up to 200 participants. This event will bring together industry stakeholders to network and share experiences, provide feedback on solar policies and programs in Nova Scotia to the DoEM, and hear presentations on relevant solar topics. The event will also include an exhibit section to showcase Nova Scotia's growing solar industry. More exciting details to follow!

CanSIA Presents at Alberta Power Symposium and Bright Business Conference in HalifaxAPSandBBC

On September 24th, 2018, CanSIA's Policy & Market Development Director, Patrick Bateman, participated in the Alberta Power Symposium in Calgary with a presentation entitled "Removing (More) Myth from Reality: Alberta & National Renewable Electricity Scan". Click here to view Patrick's presentation slide deck online.
 
On October 16, CanSIA's Policy and Regulatory Affairs Manager for Nova Scotia, Lyle Goldberg, participated as a panellist in the Bright Business Conference in Halifax with a presentation entitled "Solar Electricity Status & Potential in Nova Scotia: Goals, Consumers & Industry Capacity". Click here to view Lyle's presentation slide deck online.
Alberta Infrastructure Proposal Deadline ApproachesABInfrastructure
Important deadlines for Alberta Infrastructure's procurement of the "Renewable Attributes associated with up to 135,000 MWh per year from one or more Solar Project(s) located in Alberta and provide support payments for them under the terms of Solar Electricity Support Agreements ("SESAs")" are approaching. As of October 23rd at 4pm MT, no further addenda will be issued, and as of November 8th at 4pm MT, final proposals will have been submitted. With the evaluation period estimated at two months, the results should be known early in 2019.

CanSIA Makes Submission Regarding the Repeal of the Ontario Green Energy ActGEA2009

On September 20, 2018, the Honourable Greg Rickford, the Ontario Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, introduced Bill 34: the Green Energy Repeal Act, 2018 which, if passed, will repeal the Green Energy Act, 2009. The proposed legislation would provide the province with authority over approvals for large-scale renewable energy projects based on demonstrating need for the electricity in accordance with the regulations. It is not yet clear how the need for electricity would be defined, however, it is expected to be determined through the creation of new regulations. Furthermore, the proposed act eliminates Local Planning Appeal Tribunals and amends the Planning Act, giving municipal governments more control over approval and siting of renewable energy projects.
CanSIA currently understands that no existing solar microFIT, FIT, LRP or RESOP contracts or permits are expected to be affected by the legislation. CanSIA will continue to monitor and investigate to confirm that this is the case.
 
Click here for CanSIA's submission, made on October 21, 2018, in response the GEA repeal.

Ontario Climate Change Plan Consultation Now Open, CanSIA Launches New Member ForumONClimateChangePlan

On October 17th, 2018, the Ontario Government launched an online consultation process for a made-in-Ontario climate change plan. The Government has committed to releasing a plan in fall 2018. The Ontario plan is expected to include several areas of focus to help ensure investments in climate action effectively balance greenhouse gas reductions while supporting economic prosperity and Ontario families. The Government is accepting submissions from stakeholders up until November 16th, 2018. For more information check out the Ontario Government's website.
 
In response to this request, CanSIA is launching an Ontario Climate Change Plan member forum to elicit feedback from members regarding Ontario's climate change plan. Please click here to join the forum and to stand by for additional information regarding a forum meeting to discuss this matter further.

Nova Scotia Residential Solar Market Outlook, Labour Force and Supply Chain StudyNSStudy

With support from the Nova Scotia Department of Energy, CanSIA has engaged Dunsky Energy Consulting to undertake a market outlook, labour force and supply chain study for the Nova Scotia residential solar, storage and electric vehicle charging market. The study will: forecast demand trends for the market to 2030; evaluate the associated labour force requirements; and identify opportunities to maximize potential economic development for the province.  The study will be completed by March 31st, 2019.  Study outcomes will serve to assist the Nova Scotia Department of Energy and Mines in addressing policy and regulatory issues that will advance the future of solar across the province.
Utilities & Regulatory Affairs
Ontario Government Revokes Net Metering Regulation AmendmentsONTNetMetering
On September 25, 2018, the Ontario Government revoked the amended net metering regulations. The revoked amendments, originally approved by the Liberal government and expected to go into force on October 1, 2018, would have enabled important measures for continued growth and innovation within the solar industry, including third party ownership and virtual net metering demonstration projects. It's important to note that the current net metering regulations are still in force wherein net-metered facilities can be owned or operated by the customer and be located behind the customer's meter.

The government states that they intend to invite stakeholders to provide their views on how the net metering regulatory framework can be improved in the future. CanSIA is in the process of getting clarity on this consultation process and will absolutely be involved once it is announced. This consultation  may serve as a good opportunity to have VNM regulations more firmly entrenched in the updated regulations, and to reaffirm how third-party ownership models may help to bring more private equity into the Ontario solar market to create greater access and affordability for everyday Ontarians.
 
As previously mentioned, CanSIA has already put in place a plan to get the Ontario solar industry back on track. Our plan focuses 1) Government Relations, 2) Grassroots Mobilization, and 3) Removing Regulatory, Technical and Market Barriers.

Government of Canada develops solar and energy storage occupational standardssolarstoragegovcan

On October 11th, 2018, the Government of Canada and the Electricity Human Resources Canada (EHRC) announced funding for the new National Occupational Standards (NOS) and Career Portal project. Technological innovation is reshaping and reinventing the skills and occupations required to support the electrical grid of the 21st century.
 
Through this research a total of 15 National Occupational Standards and Essential Skills Profiles will be revised or developed to better prepare job seekers to transition into the electricity sector. Occupations to be covered including Solar Photovoltaic Installer, Energy Storage Technician, Solar Thermal Installer, Smart Grid Specialist, amongst others.

Invitation to participate in the CanSIA Member Alberta Solar By-Laws ForumABBylawsForum

CanSIA has been awarded funding from Alberta's Community Energy Capacity Building Program to undertake a study entitled: "Municipal Excellence in Alberta: Template By-Laws for Solar Energy". The scope of the project is limited to "Community Generation" (i.e. not Micro-Generation). This project would produce a reference resource for Alberta's Municipalities documenting key considerations for issues that do and do not require coverage in by-laws, a jurisdictional scan of current and best practices from across North America and template by-laws that Albertan municipalities could choose to adopt as presented or in amended form. CanSIA is engaging and consulting with Members on this topic through the Alberta Solar By-Laws Forum. A webinar will be held on Friday, November 9th, at 1pm MT to brief Members on the project and to solicit feedback on specific issues. Draft materials will be provided in advance of the webinar and a period of a week will follow the webinar for comments and feedback to be submitted. The deadline for the final report will be December 31st, 2018. Express your interest to participate in the Alberta Solar By-Laws Forum by registering for the webinar.

Electrical Inspection Permitting Fees for Solar PV reduced in British Columbiaelectricalinspection

In 2014, CanSIA began working with Technical Safety BC (BC Safety Authority) to reduce the electrical permitting fees for solar PV installations. The permit fees were historically calculated based the entire installation costs for the PV system which resulted in an unreasonable fee and a barrier to industry growth. CanSIA worked with the authority to demonstrate how lowering the fees would align with other jurisdictions, help grow the PV industry and have a positive effect on electrical contractor jobs. In 2019 the solar PV electrical permit fees will be added as a separate installation permit category (Electricity production/storage) to the electrical fee schedule at a reduce fixed rate. As these fees are effective on January 1, 2019, all permits issued between now until December 31, 2018, will pay the regular electrical installation permit fees in the existing fee schedule.

Federal Natural Resources Standing Committee Recognizes Energy Data Needfederalnatural

According to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Natural Resources, "Canada needs accurate, timely and reliable energy data to support evidence-based conversations, policies and business decisions regarding the energy sector and its impact on the economy, society and environment. Demand for energy data is constantly increasing owing to rapid evolutions in the Canadian energy sector, including the advent and growth of new technologies, Canada's ongoing transition to a lower-carbon economy, and greater public engagement in energy policy and decision making. Improving the quality of energy data is a national goal, agreed to by all the provinces and territories as part of the Canadian energy strategy in 2015". "Canada would benefit from a "one-stop shop" where Canadians, industry and policy makers could access detailed regional and national energy information that is accurate, timely, transparent, comprehensive, user-friendly, internally-consistent, free of charge, responsive to the needs of different sectors, and independent of political influence.
 
This goal could be accomplished through existing national data providers, such as Statistics Canada or the National Energy Board, or by creating an entirely new energy information agency that would function independently of government. In either case, reforming Canada's national energy information system requires significant additional attention from the federal government, in collaboration with industry, academia, civil society, Indigenous governments and communities, and provincial/territorial governments. The federal government needs to focus on producing meaningful and competitive information to support Canada's rapidly evolving energy sector in a data-driven global economy". Read the full report online featuring evidence from CanSIA Director of Policy & Market Development, Patrick Bateman.
2018-2019 Strategic Projects
CanSIA launching new Strategic Projects for the 2018-19 membership year
CanSIA knows that many of its members want to play an active role in shaping the business environment for solar in Canada. To that end, CanSIA's Strategic Projects are designed to align with and leverage the strategic objectives of our member companies.

CanSIA has identified the following three strategic projects for the upcoming membership year which will help drive sustainable demand for solar energy across Canada.

Advancing Solar Technology Regulations in Ontario (ASTRO):
The Ontario solar electricity industry is now operating within a more market-driven and regulation-based context. The aim of the Advancing Solar Technology Regulations in Ontario (ASTRO) project is to work collaboratively with Ontario government departments and energy agencies to strategically position and implement existing and forthcoming electricity sector regulations to a) grow the Ontario solar electricity market, and; b) improve solar electricity economics. To learn more about ASTRO's targeted outcomes click here.

Alberta Solar Market Development (ASMD):
The aim of the Alberta Solar Market Development (ASMD) Strategic Project is to capture increasing near-term and long-term market opportunity for solar energy in Alberta's electricity supply-mix and to support the development of the policy and regulatory framework that can enable project development.   This 1-year project will build upon CanSIA's past market development initiatives in the province of Alberta to work toward existing policy commitments, giving rise to near-term solar market opportunities and a path to a sustainable long-term role for solar in the provinces' future electricity needs. To learn more about ASMD's targeted outcomes click here.

Building Public Support for Solar (BPSS):
Leveraging last year's Building Public Support for Solar (BPSS) efforts, this initiative will focus on growth of market opportunities for solar energy through increased public demand. BPSS aims to educate the public on the benefits of solar energy and demonstrate how they can get involved with the solar programs in their region with a trusted CanSIA Member organization. Increased public awareness and demand will be channeled into multi-partisan support for solar energy - informing political leaders and decision makers of the importance of solar energy. To learn more about the BPSS's targeted outcomes click here.
Getting Involved

Members at the Corporate 1, Corporate 2, and Supporter 1 levels are eligible to become Influencers by funding and participating in Strategic Projects. Influencers receive a number of exclusive benefits that are not available through traditional membership and, above all else, access information that can be applied to strategic business planning.

Contact Lisa Hatina , Business Development and Member Relations Manager, to learn more about how your company can participate in the 2018-19 Strategic Projects.