5.15.2012

Increasing efficiency controls energy prices

GPO leader Mike Schreiner is calling for a comprehensive energy efficiency plan to help families and businesses deal with rising energy prices.

“Recycling old ideas like privatizing hydro and regulating gasoline prices won’t work,” says Schreiner.  “Policies designed to score political points do not solve our long-term energy challenges.”

A recent report by the Ontario Energy Board shows that since 2006 nuclear power generation is responsible for 46% of rising electricity rates. More than $2 billion in cost overrun for the Bruce nuclear refurbishment shows that the Conservative’s privatization plans are no guarantee that Ontarians will not be on the hook for nuclear financial meltdowns.

Studies show that the NDP’s plan to regulate retail gasoline prices is not a solution to rising energy costs. A multi-year comparison of Alberta, Ontario and Nova Scotia retail prices shows gasoline price regulation has no effect on long term costs.

“You don’t need a PhD in economics to know that reducing demand is the best way to reduce prices,” says GPO deputy leader and finance critic Kevin O'Donnell. “The old parties at Queen’s Park are doing us a disservice by failing to focus on energy efficiency and conservation.”

"Investment in conservation creates skilled jobs and prepares us for the future," says Schreiner. “Hudak's out-of-date solution of privatizing OPG and Hydro One does neither."

"The truth is gasoline prices are going up and the province cannot control that. The Ontario government should focus on incentives for fuel-efficient vehicles, public transit, and walking and biking," says GPO deputy leader and infrastructure critic Judith Van Veldhuysen. "The NDP’s plan to regulate pump prices puts politics before good policy and will only encourage more pollution and gridlock."

The Green Party of Ontario would:

Invest in building retrofits instead of new nuclear.  Studies show that for half the cost of building one nuclear reactor, we can retrofit 1.6 million homes to save the same amount of energy and create 90 times more job. 

Provide incentives and tax credits for transit users, fuel efficient vehicles, ride sharing, and pay as you go insurance to reduce commuting costs.

Dedicate 1% of the transportation budget for cycling and 1% for pedestrian infrastructure

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