A federally backed, $2.2 billion solar project in the California desert isn’t producing the electricity it is contractually required to deliver to PG&E Corp., which says the solar plant may be forced to shut down if it doesn’t receive a break Thursday from state regulators.
The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, owned by BrightSource Energy Inc., NRG Energy Inc. NRG, +0.79% and Alphabet Inc.’s GOOG, +0.02%GOOGL, +0.15% Google, uses more than 170,000 mirrors mounted to the ground to reflect sunlight to 450-foot-high towers topped by boilers that heat up to create steam, which in turn is used to generate electricity.
But the unconventional solar-thermal project, financed with $1.5 billion in federal loans, has riled environmentalists by killing thousands of birds, many of which are burned to death — and has so far failed to produce the expected power.
Ontario is building nearly 500 electric vehicle charging stations across the province with hopes they will encourage more residents to use electric vehicles.
The provincial government says the network of public stations will help address “range anxiety” among electric car drivers who may be concerned about the distance their vehicles can travel compared to traditional vehicles.
The full network of stations will allow electric vehicles to travel from Windsor, Ont., to Ottawa, or from Toronto to North Bay, Ont., as well as in and around major urban centres.
The stations — which will be placed at more than 250 locations including highways, workplaces and public spaces — are all expected to be in service by the end of March next year.
The government says the $20 million investment in the charging stations comes from Ontario’s $325 million Green Investment Fund, which supports projects that fight climate change.
The province provides up to $14,000 in incentives for electric vehicle buyers as it aims for electric cars to make up five per cent of new vehicle sales by 2020. It says there are nearly 7,000 electric vehicles currently on the roads in Ontario.