World Trade Organization judges largely backed complaints by the European Union and Japan against Canada over subsidies the province of Ontario gives to renewable-energy producers that use domestic technology, according to the Sierra Club and Public Citizen.
Under Ontario’s feed-in tariff program, created by the province’s Green Energy Act, above-market rates are paid to producers of renewable energy provided it is generated with a certain percentage of Canadian-made equipment. The act was designed to help Ontario meet its goal of shutting all its coal- power generators by 2014.
WTO judges agreed with the EU and Japan that provisions of the program discriminate against foreign suppliers of equipment and components for renewable-energy generation facilities by affording less favorable treatment to imported equipment and components than given to like-products originating in Ontario. Judges rejected the EU and Japanese argument that the program provisions constitute an illegal subsidy.