Ontario Gets 407 Megawatts of Solar Power Contracts, Originally Expected 88 Megawatts

As we reported before, many solar power farms are planned in the province of Ontario, Canada. Major players include SunEdison of Baltimore and Skypower of Toronto, who just broke ground on a solar project, and OptiSolar, a California manufacturer of thin-film silicon solar cells (the composite image above is of their Sarnia project).

The Toronto Star reports that the province now has contracts for 407 megawatts, while it initially predicted that it would get 88. We suppose that's enough to call their program a success! But it's not surprising considering that they are paying 42 cents (!) per kilowatt hour for electricity produced via solar power farms.As reporter Tyler Hamilton points out, there's no guarantee that all the contracted for solar farms will all be built, but since the "largest solar installation in Canada to date is only 100 kilowatts, the ground-breaking on these large parks is nothing short of impressive."

Hamilton plans to get some aerial photos of the solar power farms once they're built. We'll keep an eye on this developing story.

It's still a bit sad that cloudy places like Germany (and now Ontario) are getting so many solar panels while very sunny countries (that are poorer) get less, because the panels would produce more clean power over there. But at least any demand is sending the signal to the solar industry to build more capacity and keep R&D; efforts going full throttle to slash costs, so it's still a net positive in the end, even if it's not as good as it could be.

::Sun rises on Ontario solar farm industry, ::42 solar parks totalling 407 MW under contract in Ontario
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Tags: Alternative Energy | Canada | Energy | Ontario | Solar Power

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