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Province to be coal-free next year?

Ontario’s energy mix could be virtually 100 per cent coal-free by next year, especially if the government boosted conservation by residents and acted boldly with its upcoming Green Energy Act, suggests a new report.

Ontario’s energy mix could be virtually 100 per cent coal-free by next year, especially if the government boosted conservation by residents and acted boldly with its upcoming Green Energy Act, suggests a new report.

As of December, Ontario had a maximum energy capacity of 33,045 mega­watts, or 26,611 megawatts after subtracting the power generated from its coal plants.

By June 2010, the government hopes to have an additional 3,913 megawatts of coal-free power available for consumption. That would push its total capacity well beyond the record-high electricity demand of 27,005 megawatts set on Aug. 1, 2006.

The numbers suggest Ontario can phase out its use of coal-fired electricity well before its self-imposed deadline of Dec. 31, 2014, and the province should commit to only using those dirty plants in emergency situations, said Jack Gibbons, chairman of the Ontario Clean Air Alliance, which released the report.

 
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