Proposal to amend the Planning Act, 1990 to apply Hydro One’s electricity transmission project exemptions to all transmitters.

ERO number
019-3034
Notice type
Act
Act
Planning Act, R.S.O. 1990
Posted by
Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines
Notice stage
Proposal
Proposal posted
Comment period
January 26, 2021 - March 12, 2021 (45 days) Open
Last updated

There is no requirement to post this notice on the Environmental Registry of Ontario, but we want to hear your thoughts. Submit a comment and tell us what you think. Learn about the consultation process and types of notices on the registry.

This consultation closes at 11:59 p.m. on:
March 12, 2021

Proposal summary

We are proposing to amend the Planning Act, 1990 to apply Hydro One’s electricity transmission project exemption to all transmitters whose transmission projects undergo Comprehensive or Streamlined Environmental Assessment processes. Doing so supports fair competitive transmission procurement processes and reduces regulatory duplication.

Why consultation isn't required

The government has chosen to consult on the ERO however the proposed amendment to the existing Planning Act, 1990 exemption is not expected to result in significant environmental impacts.

This amendment to the Planning Act, 1990 is being made to create a fair electricity sector by amending a current Planning Act, 1990 exemption targeting Hydro One so it applies to all electricity transmitters undertaking transmission projects. These projects will all require the completion of an Environmental Assessment process under the Environmental Assessment Act. The environmental assessment is the most appropriate process for evaluating environmental impacts including:

  • the impact on current and future generations of Ontarians, consistent with the principals of sustainable development;
  • opportunities and threats from climate change, and;
  • the environmental costs, benefits and risks of the project to ensure cost-effective environmental protections are incorporated.

Proposal details

Section 62 of the Planning Act, 1990 currently exempts Hydro One’s transmission projects that are approved under the Environmental Assessment Act from the Planning Act, 1990 in its entirety. This exemption was introduced in 1983, before the energy market was restructured, at a time when Hydro One was part of the fully integrated, Crown-owned Ontario Hydro.

The current proposal to amend the Planning Act, 1990 would apply Hydro One’s exemption to all transmitters whose transmission projects undergo Comprehensive or Streamlined Environmental Assessment processes.

Expanding the exemption to all transmitters supports Ontario’s Open for Business initiative as it creates a level playing field for transmitters in Ontario. This supports work to enhance competitive procurement of transmission.

Furthermore, expanding the scope of exempted transmission projects reduces duplication of approvals. All exempt projects will require the completion of an Environmental Assessment process under the Environmental Assessment Act. The Environmental Assessment is the most appropriate process for evaluating environmental impacts including:

  • The impact on current and future generations of Ontarians, consistent with the principals of sustainable development;
  • Opportunities and threats from climate change, and;
  • The environmental costs, benefits and risks of the project to ensure cost-effective environmental protections are incorporated.

Supporting materials

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Contact

Samir Adkar

Phone number
Email address
Office
Strategic Network and Agency Policy Division - Energy Networks and Indigenous Policy Branch
Address

77 Grenville St.
6th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 2C1
Canada

Office phone number

Connect with us

Contact

Samir Adkar

Phone number
Email address
Office
Strategic Network and Agency Policy Division - Energy Networks and Indigenous Policy Branch
Address

77 Grenville St.
6th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 2C1
Canada

Office phone number

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