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Sault Ste. Marie To Build One Of World's Largest Solar Farms

September 7, 2007 - Ontario's electricity grid will soon get a boost from two new solar farms capable of delivering 20 megawatts of renewable electricity, MPP David Orazietti announced today.

"This is an exciting development in Ontario's quest for cleaner power, and in our efforts to minimize our ecological footprint," said Orazietti, MPP for Sault Ste Marie, making the announcement on behalf of Energy Minister Dwight Duncan. "We're building the electricity system Ontarians need and deserve, and creating a whole new industry here in Sault Ste Marie."

This project will comprise two solar farms and will contribute 20 megawatts to the grid - enough to supply electricity for 3,000 homes. It is the second-largest solar farm in Canada, after the 40-megawatt project in the Sarnia area announced earlier this year. The project represents an additional $120 million investment in the economy of Sault Ste Marie.

The new solar farm is just the latest in a series of energy projects that are resulting in significant investments in the economy of Sault Ste Marie:

Prince wind farm - Canada's largest wind installation - is a $400 million investment; The Algoma Energy Cogeneration facility - a 63MW high efficiency cogeneration project - is a $135 million investment and is currently under construction.

Today's announcement brings to 140 the number of projects awarded under the Standard Offer Program since February. Taken together, these projects will generate 595 megawatts of renewable energy - enough to power approximately 150,000 homes.

Today's announcement also builds on the McGuinty government's solar power strategy which includes: Setting a target of installing 100,000 solar roofs across the province; Launching "Go Solar" - a one stop information shop for Ontarians interested in installing solar energy systems to heat water or generate electricity; Extending the retail sales tax rebate on qualifying solar equipment, as well as wind, micro-hydro, and geothermal systems, to January 1, 2010.

For further information on the Standard Offer Program and tips on how to become a small generator, visit www.powerauthority.on.ca/sop. (416) 327-4334