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Ontario Finalizes Electrification and Energy Transition Panel

Press Release

November 17, 2022

TORONTO – Ontario is planning for the long-term reliability and affordability of the province’s clean energy supply by appointing the remaining members of the Electrification and Energy Transition Panel. Today, the province appointed Dr. Monica Gattinger and Chief Emeritus Emily Whetung, former Chief of Curve Lake First Nation, to the Panel, where they join Panel Chair Mr. David Collie.

“Ontario comes from a position of strength, we have already done the heavy-lifting building one of the cleanest electricity systems in the world, giving us a clean energy advantage,” said Todd Smith, Minister of Energy. “Through the Electrification and Energy Transition Panel, our government is planning for the future to ensure we can continue to serve a growing population and support the new jobs from unprecedented investments including everything from electric vehicle and battery manufacturing to clean steelmaking.”

The Electrification and Energy Transition Panel will advise the government on the highest value short, medium, and long-term opportunities for the energy sector to help Ontario’s economy prepare for electrification and the energy transition. Their goal is to help enable investment, job creation and skills development in Ontario by keeping energy rates low and creating a more predictable and competitive investment environment.

The Panel will also identify opportunities to strengthen Ontario’s long-term energy planning process by better coordinating the fuels and the electricity sector. To support this work, the Ministry is commissioning an independent Cost-Effective Energy Pathways Study to help better understand how Ontario’s energy sector can best support electrification and the energy transition. Together, the Panel and the Pathways Study will help the government make the best strategic decisions to reform our long-term energy planning process to serve Ontarians and prepare our province for the energy system of the future.

This Panel will build on the plan the Ontario government is already implementing to meet emerging energy needs and ensure a reliable, affordable and clean electricity supply including:

The work of the Panel will be supported by the Honourable Howard Wetston K.C., who brings his experience from his time serving as Chair and CEO of the Ontario Energy Board and the Ontario Securities Commission, as well as his service in the Senate of Canada between 2016 and 2022.

Quick Facts

  • In 2021 the IESO published it’s Gas-Phase Out Impact Assessment which found a phase-out of natural gas generation without adequate time to prepare would add an estimated $100 a month to the average residential bill by 2030, and even under the most optimistic scenario would lead to emergency actions such as rotating blackouts to manage energy shortfalls.
  • The significant impacts to affordability and reliability outlined in the IESO’s report is unacceptable to the government as it would not only impact current consumers but would hinder other progressive actions to reduce emissions including electrification.
  • In 2021 Minister Smith asked the IESO to develop an achievable pathway to zero emissions in the electricity sector, with specific direction to consider reliability and affordability in their work. The IESO will deliver this report by the end of 2022.

Additional Resources

BIOGRAPHIES OF PANEL MEMBERS AND PARTICIPANTS

Mr. Collie spent 13 years as the President and CEO of the Electrical Safety Authority and previously was the President and CEO of Burlington Hydro Electric Inc. and held senior executive positions at Hydro One Inc. and Halton Hills Hydro. Mr. Collie is also a founding member of the Energy Transformation Network of Ontario. Mr. Collie is a faculty member of the Directors College of Canada and the Energy Executive-in-Residence. He is the past Chair of Plug ‘n Drive and the Electricity Distributors Association as well as Past Vice Chair of the Energy Council of Canada. Professionally, Mr. Collie is a Chartered Professional Accountant (“Fellow”) and a Chartered Director.

Dr. Gattinger is Director of the Institute for Science, Society and Policy, full professor at the School of Political Studies and Founding Chair of Positive Energy at the University of Ottawa where she has worked for 20 years. She is a fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute, board member of the Clean Resource Innovation Network, and serves on advisory committees for the Institute on Governance, the National Research Council Canada, the Nuclear Waste Management Organization, the Ontario Energy Board, the Ottawa Science Policy Network and the University of Calgary. Dr. Gattinger received the 2020 Clean50 Award for her thought leadership in the energy sector.

Chief Emeritus Whetung grew up in Curve Lake First Nation. She pursued a Bachelor of Arts at Trent University and a Juris Doctor at Osgoode Hall Law School after which she practiced Real Estate Law for a decade. Ms. Whetung was elected Chief of Curve Lake First Nation from 2019-2022. She is passionate about the rights of First Nations people, including protecting the environment for future generations and protection of Treaty Rights. She uses her expertise and knowledge to ensure that the voices of Indigenous people are heard and respected and for finding ways to ensure economic advancements occur in sustainable manners and building healthy relationships between First Nations and Canadians.

The Honourable Howard Wetston, K.C. was appointed to the Senate of Canada on November 10, 2016, to represent Ontario and served until June 3, 2022. As Senator, he participated in a number of committees, including Ethics and Conflict of Interest for Senators; Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources; and Banking, Trade and Commerce. He was Chair and CEO of the Ontario Securities Commission from 2010–2015, Vice-Chair from 1999–2004 and Chair and CEO of the Ontario Energy Board from 2003-2010. He was also Canada’s Commissioner of Competition from 1989-1993. He is a Senior Fellow of the C.D. Howe Institute. In 2016, the Honourable Wetston was awarded the Order of Canada for his significant contributions as a public servant, jurist and regulator.

Media Contacts

Palmer Lockridge
Minister’s Office
[email protected]

Natasha Demetriades
Communications Branch
[email protected]
416-327-3855

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