End wind farm ripoff: MPP McNaughton

Ontario: victim of an experiment
Ontario: victim of an experiment

We are working toward keeping wind in the conversation as the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario seeks a new leader. Here, candidate Monte McNaughton weighs in with a pretty good summary of what has happened in Ontario … and why we need to get out of this mess.

Ending Ontario’s wind experiment

Financial Post Comment, January 27, 2015

How do we ensure that when one government abuses its power, we don’t have to live with the consequences for a generation? Through the supremacy of our democratically elected legislative assembly in Ontario.

In 2009, the Ontario Liberals misused their majority when they stripped municipalities of their long-standing land planning rights in order to impose the wind turbine experiment. They then used executive orders to hand out sole-sourced deals ‎to line the pockets of their wind developer friends. These 20-year deals provide guaranteed pricing to developers for wind power that is above market rates — because wind power cannot be produced in Ontario at reasonable market rates. They also guarantee revenue even when turbines are asked not to produce wind power.

The Ontario Liberals deliberately ignored the interests and wishes of rural Ontario and made all consumers, both urban and rural pay for it—to the tune of $1 billion to $3 billion annually, with increases projected every year. That’s $20 billion to $60 billion over the next two decades. This accounted for only 3.4% of Ontario’s electricity generating capacity, but represented 20% of the total commodity cost of electricity in the province.

And the bad news doesn’t end there — for the last two years, our electricity system has been forced to dump more than double the amount of power generated by wind turbines into other jurisdictions, and at a 75% discount on what we paid to produce it.

Why? Because we are producing more electricity than we need, and because the wind turbines in Ontario produce most of their power during off-peak hours – when we don’t need it all.

And how are the turbines helping the environment? Since wind power is unreliable it requires additional backup power from other generation sources, such as gas-fired generation, which — you guessed it — increases air emissions.

France, Belgium, Italy, and Spain have all had to reverse course on wind power. The reason — the exorbitant costs on consumers with no benefit.

So how do we get out of this mess? If a future government issued another executive order to terminate the McGuinty-Wynne wind power scheme and keep it out of public view, then taxpayers would be on the hook for the entirety of the commitments — as was done by Dalton McGuinty in 2010 with the proposed power plants in Mississauga and Oakville. If, however, the democratically elected legislature passed an explicit statute to end the wind power rip-off, Ontario could determine what compensation, if any, would be paid, and to whom.

Enacting legislation to repeal the Liberal wind power boondoggle is the right way forward. As Premier I will do just that and introduce measures in the legislature to correct this abuse of power by the Ontario Liberals.

Monte McNaughton is the MPP for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex and a candidate for the leadership of the PC Party of Ontario. More details about McNaughton’s plan to end Ontario’s wind energy experiment are available at www.Monte.ca/wind.



Garth Manning

Mr. McNaughton tells it like it really is but is unlikely to win the leadership. He publicly acclaimed his endorsement by former Mayor Rob Ford, an unfortunate lapse of judgement. Hopefully his accurate views on wind are shared by the leading candidate(s).


Here why I think this idea, of passing a law to get out of this mess, is insane. A law is passed which breaks the contracts and sets the compensation. The wind farm companies go to court. I suspect that they would win. The cost? Compensation for lost revenue, punitative damages, legal costs, and other costs. The bottom line would be a gas plant sum on steroids.

Richard Mann

Legal experts suggest that contracts can be broken. Wind is not achieving stated goal, it is not reducing C02 emission or fossil fuel use.



Contracts can be broken however that comes with a cost. The contracts pay for electricity. The wind farms produce electricity. Breaking the contracts will probably hugely expensive.

Wind Concerns Ontario

Not so: paying the developers for any “sunk” costs for development will be a fraction of paying them over the 20 year contracts. It is what Ontario should do to get us out of this mess.


Wind farms will go after lost revenue. A huge cost.


Here is a bit more about law suits over broken contracts. Please note that the quotes come from a Toronto area law firm website. So these ideas would apply to any breach of contract case over wind farms in Ontario.

“In a breach of contract case, the court might well order the breaching party to compensate the non-breaching party for losses resulting from the breach. A defendant is liable to a plaintiff for all the natural and direct consequences of the defendant’s wrongful act.

“Expectation Damages: in a breach of contract case, for instance, damages intended to cover what the injured party expected to receive from the contract. Calculations are usually straightforward as they are based on the contract itself or market values.

Consequential Damages: may be awarded when the loss suffered by a plaintiff is not caused directly or immediately by the wrongful conduct of a defendant, but results from the defendant’s action instead.”


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