Greenpeace Canada, York University Professor and OCAA Chair attack the Ford Government

The Doug Ford led Ontario government took almost three years since they were given the mandate to govern the province (decimating the Wynne led government) to recognize “renewable energy” is given preferential treatment by IESO (Independent Electricity System Operator)!  What they recently did was to state they would “repeal sections of the Electricity Act, 1998 and the Ontario Energy Board Act, 1998 that were introduced under the Green Energy and Green Economy Act, 2009 to promote and prioritize the development or renewable energy.”  They opened the comment time for 40 days commencing April 15, 2021.

The takeaway of the proposed changes was focused as: “Prioritizing renewable generation is no longer appropriate. Going forward, Ontario will ensure value for ratepayers by allowing all resources to compete to meet system needs.”  

As one would expect pushback from the eco-warriors started and Keith Stewart, Senior energy strategist at Greenpeace Canada (Stewart worked for Gerald Butts at WWF as Director, Climate Change) jumped! He was ticked with the proposed changes in regulations and expressed his distain via twitter:

Keith Stewart@climatekeithDoug Ford isn’t only screwing up the pandemic response. His latest climate move: Proposal to Eliminate Renewable Energy Requirements for Ontario’s electricity system#onpoli https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-3471 9:48 AM · Apr 25,

Many will recall Greenpeace lost it’s charitable status in 1999 after having operated as a charity since 1976. Revenue Canada “refused to recognize the new Greenpeace Environmental Foundation as a charity, saying its activities have “no public benefit” and that lobbying to shut down industries could send people “into poverty.” It appears Greenpeace continue wishing to “send people into poverty”, ignoring the governments proposed changes are specifically focused to;  “ensure value for ratepayers”.  

An interesting aside! Greenpeace Canada has evolved and created a new entity having charitable status from the Canada Revenue Agency with an “Effective date of status: 2020-09-02”. The new entity is Greenpeace Canada Education Fund (GCEF).

They claim GECF is: “Separate from the campaigning arm of Greenpeace, the Greenpeace Canada Education Fund invests in scientific research, education, and other activities aimed at raising awareness of the environmental issues that affect people in Canada and around the world.” It goes on to state; ”To maintain our independence and integrity, we never take money from governments or corporations. That means the Greenpeace Canada Education Fund relies on donations from individuals, foundations and other non-profit organizations to achieve our goals.” The foregoing echo the words from Greenpeace Canada’s website but a simple search noted Greenpeace Canada got two grants totaling $100K from the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada a division of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change so it appears they will take money from governments!

It is also worth noting the new charity and Greenpeace Canada have the same address at 33 Cecil St., Toronto. The December 31, 2019 annual report for Greenpeace Canada claims they spent over $760K on “Public outreach and education” and almost $3 million on fundraising.  They must feel using the new entity will help them reduce “fundraising” expenses due to their ability to issue tax receipts meaning, taxpayers will pick up a good portion of the fundraising costs in the future. 

One should wonder why the CRA changed its mind?      

The other individual who jumped on the bandwagon to condemn the Ford government’s initiative was none other then Mark Winfield*, a York U Professor and former Program Director at Pembina. Joining him with “quotes” in an article posted on “The Energy Mix” was Keith Stewart and Jack Gibbons** of the OCAA (Ontario Clean Air Alliance). The article headline is capitalized and scarily states: “Ontario Creates ‘Innovation Wasteland’ with Latest Renewables Rollback, Critic Warns”.  Some of the scarier quotes from the three individuals in the article are: “allergy to renewable energy”, “evidence-free decision making”, “a political vendetta”, “a program of extermination”, etc. etc. Their concerns seem over the top and aimed at scaring the reader.

Ontarians, who have experienced huge electricity cost increases since the advent of the GEA however, seems oblivious to the unidentified author of the article and the three individuals quoted! Perhaps someone else pays their electricity bills or they have solar panels on their roof or simply, facts don’t matter to them! 

The facts were formerly presented by  Ontario’s Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk in her December 2, 2015 report which stated: “Between 2004 and 2014, the Ministry issued two policy plans and 93 ministerial directives or directions that did not fully consider the state of the electricity market, did not take long-term effects fully into account and sometimes went against the OPA’s advice.”  The report further described the costs to Ontario’s ratepayers as follows! “In particular, the Global Adjustment fees, covering the excess payments to generators over the market price, cost consumers $37 billion during that period, and are projected to cost another $133 billion from 2015 to 2032.

Those eco-warriors who are dependent on our tax dollars are totally unconcerned about the plan to “ensure value for ratepayers” and instead are hell-bent on further destroying the Ontario and Canadian economies and the well-being of all Canadians!

The time has come to remove the charitable status of them all (including University Foundations)*** unless they dismiss the professors demonizing fossil fuels so they can appreciate what those in the private sector are burdened with!

* For more on Winfield and York University check out this article!

**More on Gibbons and the OCAA here!

***York University Foundation’s (registered charity) April 30, 2020 annual report indicates total revenue of $1.268 billion and a claim that $1.095 billion of that was spent on “charitable activities”.

Author: parkergallantenergyperspectivesblog

Retired international banker.

6 thoughts on “Greenpeace Canada, York University Professor and OCAA Chair attack the Ford Government”

  1. Parker, I could not agree more with your conclusion. However, I cannot see this happening under the current federal government. Remember that Trudeau shut down the inquiry by the CRA that was launched under the Harper government to examine whether several environmental organizations whose “educational” activities consisted of spreading propaganda and organizing blockades should lose their charity status. Since then, an Ontario court removed all restrictions on the use of “charity” funds for political activities so long as they are not explicitly partisan, and the Trudeau government declined to appeal the decision. The fix is in, as long as Trudeau and his ilk are in power.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Apologies, but I missed the pushback from the leader of the Ontario Green Party who claimed: “Clean energy isn’t just the future, it’s the present.” Just had a look at the output from the grid connected wind at the IESO website and at 10 AM this morning it was churning our 203 MW which is 0.50% of its capacity and was 0.04 % of that hour’s demand. If that’s what the future holds get ready for lots of blackouts! link here: https://gpo.ca/2021/04/26/ford-taking-us-backwards-on-renewables/

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The “Climate Emergency” is bureaucracies’ ultimate achievement. With a date so far in the future, the creators of this policy will be dead and unaccountable. Furthermore, 25 -30 years is a bureaucrat’s career so it provides jobs for life for its founders. Finally, come 2050, they can say “It worked…”

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  4. Re ERO 019- 3471
    I asked this question to the contact, William Coutts:
    If the legislation to repeal priority access provisions for renewable energy passes, will the IESO, effective the date of passage, stop granting renewable energy priority access to the grid?
    His reply:
    26 (1.1) – which is proposed to be revoked – says that the government can create a regulation that requires a transmitter or distributor to provide priority connection access to the transmission system or distribution system (“the grid”) for renewable energy generation facilities. No regulation was made under this authority, so this prioritization was never implemented. Sections 26 (1.2) and (1.3) are also proposed to be revoked. Those sections provide further details about what a regulation could included and how that regulation Section would operate.

    Is this an accurate statement?

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    1. It appear to be accurate but it will only affect new contracts that are instigated by IESO. The existing contracts given when the McGuinty/Wynne crew were running the province will not be affected unfortunately so we are stuck with them for the full 20 year term of the original contracts.

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