Well the new rates are out and unlike last year’s cut this is a serious one. The rate cut this year is almost 25%, from 38.4 to 29.4 cents per kWh. The rate changes are supposed to reflect the changing economics in the solar industry but since our dollar has lost 20% of it’s value this year, it hasn’t worked out that way. On the world market there may have been some price reductions but here in Ontario where we have to buy things with CDN dollars that’s not the case.
So why such a dramatic decrease in feed in rate? Unfortunately like everything else in the energy sector, politics plays a huge role. The Ontario Liberals have taken too much heat for too long and rather than taking the time to defend the program their efforts seem focused elsewhere. Lowering the rate to this level means that the program can be transitioned to a net-metering based program that much sooner. There are plenty of Hydro One customers already paying 25 cents a kWh so how far off can net-metering be?
The message as always is, “Get your application in now!” The rate applies to all projects that receive their AAN after December 31st which means if you want this year’s rate you really need to get your application in today. For some customers there may be a week or two left but if you are a customer of a slow moving utility like Toronto Hydro it is probably already too late.
|Renewable Fuel||Old Rate||New Rate||Change|
|Solar Rooftop <10kW||38.4||29.4||-25%|
|Solar Rooftop 10kW – 100kW||34.3||24.2||-29%|
|Solar Rooftop 100kW – 500kW||31.6||22.5||-29%|
|Solar Ground <10kW||28.9||22.5||-22%|
|Solar Ground 10kW – 500kW||27.5||20.9||-24%|
So once again if you have any plans of going solar in the near futre you need to seriously considering doing it now. If you wait until next year it could cost you over $20,000 in lost revenue if you wait.