A Petition to Support the Continued Use of Affordable Natural Gas in Ontario

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June 7, 2016

Liberal Government Uncommitted to Natural Gas in Ontario

QUEEN’S PARK – Since a confidential cabinet document was leaked detailing the Wynne Liberals’ plan to phase out natural gas in the province of Ontario, the Liberals have repeatedly denied the accusations and claimed to have full support of the natural gas industry.

Today amended details of the Climate Change Action Plan were revealed in the media, outlining a new plan to require new homes to be carbon net zero by 2030. The updated language offers no more security for natural gas users and the industry, because it is nearly impossible to heat your home with natural gas and achieve a net zero carbon home.

Union Gas President Steve Baker sent a letter to the Premier, which said, “Without positive certainty about the long-term role of natural gas in Ontario, we will need to re-evaluate our… proposed natural gas community expansion.”

Ontario PC Energy Critic John Yakabuski used today’s Question Period to ask the Liberal Government about their future plans for natural gas and the implications it would have on the industry.

“The easiest way to get to net zero homes by 2030? Remove natural gas,” he said. “The Liberals have not spent a single dollar on natural gas expansion and now Union Gas won’t invest. How does the Liberal Government plan on expanding natural gas without Union Gas on board?”

The Ontario PC Caucus also received a letter from the President of Can Art Aluminum, which already employs 350 people in Ontario and is expanding in Lakeshore to employ another 86. The letter says that without assurance that natural gas will have a place in Ontario for decades to come, they will have no choice but “to look to expand in the USA, with the real possibility of moving all of their business.”

Leader of the Official Opposition Patrick Brown later added, “The Liberal Government has offered absolutely zero assurances to the people and businesses of Ontario that they are committed to natural gas in the province of Ontario. Eliminating natural gas remains a part of Premier Kathleen Wynne’s hidden agenda.  We saw it in their leaked cabinet plan; now they’ve simply changed their messaging.  This plan has real implications for families and businesses across Ontario – life will continue to get harder and more expensive.”