POLITICS

North Bay company warns it will be driven out of business by green energy policy

03/07/2012 04:00 EST | Updated 05/06/2012 05:12 EDT
TORONTO - One of the largest employers in North Bay says it could be forced out of business by the Ontario government's green energy policies.

Fabrene Incorporated, which has 250 workers manufacturing polyethylene fabrics for industrial use, says rising electricity bills are becoming too much to handle.

Fabrene vice-president John Spencer says the Global Adjustment fee charged to offset the premiums Ontario pays for wind and solar power increased seven-fold in recent years to $1 million a year.

Spencer says his company can't pay that kind of power bill and stay in business.

He calls green energy a noble cause, but says the government's execution of the plan is "causing some pain."

Spencer says to make matters worse, Ontario pays neighbouring jurisdictions to take its excess electricity, which means he's subsidizing lower power rates for his American-based competition.

The Ontario government promises to complete a review of the subsidies it pays for wind and solar power by the end of the month, and does plan to reduce the green energy premiums.