Ontario to eliminate coal-fired power plants

Nanticoke coal-fired power plant in Ontario

The largest coal-fired power plants in Ontario will close by the end of 2013. Shutting down the Nanticoke and Lambton plants will mean coal will account for less than 1 percent of Ontario's energy supply by 2014, said Chris Bentley, Minister of Energy, according to Mining.com.

In 2003, coal accounted for 25 percent of energy in Ontario. Today, it accounts for less than 3 percent. Another remaining coal-fired plant, Thunder Bay, is also set to close at the end of 2014, the article stated. The province plans to use zero energy from coal-fired plants in the future. When it does so, it will be the first North American government to completely shut down its coal operations, Clean Technica reported.

The coal closures are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Ontario to a level equivalent of eliminating 7 million cars, and save $4.4 billion in annual health and environmental costs, the article stated. An increase in natural gas generation in Ontario and renewable energy initiatives have encouraged the government to eliminate the coal-fired plants, the source said.

The coal market is explored at PennEnergy's research area.

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