Green jobs and efficiency leave no room for costly nuclear

New money for nuclear power is financially irresponsible. While Dalton McGuinty and Tim Hudak have been trading barbs over who supports nuclear more, the Green Party of Ontario is focused on more cost effective solutions to our energy needs.

The best bang for the buck in energy planning is to reduce demand by increasing energy efficiency. Conservation measures cost three cents per kWh. By comparison, a conservative cost of new nuclear generation to Ontarians would be 17 cents per kWh. Ontario has significant room to improve energy efficiency, as the province uses 50% more electricity per person than neighbouring New York State.

The GPO supports investment in a Green Building Program that would create jobs today while saving money by reducing our dependence on expensive nuclear and polluting gas power. This is a financially responsible investment that will help increase our productivity while proving good for Ontario jobs and beneficial to public health.

The most financially responsible next step in electrical supply is investment in combined heat and power projects (CHP). These small-scale projects can be done at schools, hospitals, malls and apartment buildings and cost just six cents per kWh to generate electricity. At the same time they can provide backup power in case of power outages.

At the same time the Green Party would support the building of smart grid technology for Ontario which allow for more community-based renewable power to hook into the grid, and allow for energy distribution throughout the province without disruption. By establishing a transition fund, Greens would assist local manufacturers as they develop renewable products such as wind turbines, allowing our homegrown green energy sector to flourish.

There are plenty of alternatives to costly nuclear power. The Green Party wants to seize those opportunities to allow tomorrow's economy to start today.