The federal government’s inclusion of small modular reactors (SMRs) in the clean energy technologies eligible for a new investment tax credit has been received as a clear signal that it believes that the nuclear energy it is a “clean energy” on the same level as other technologies with low CO2 emissions.
The Financial overview autumn 2022 was released on Nov. 3 by Deputy Prime Minister and Treasury Secretary Chrystia Freeland, who said it focused on: “Building an economy that works for everyone…even if we face global headwinds, the investments we are making today will make Canada more sustainable and prosperous for generations to come.”
The federal government pledged in its April 2022 budget to introduce a tax credit for investments in clean technology, with a focus on zero-emission technologies, battery storage solutions and the hydrogen cleaned.
“After the passage of the so-called Reducing Inflation Act in the United States, the need for a competitive tax credit for clean technologies in Canada is more important than ever”the statement says, before going ahead to propose a refundable tax credit equal to 30% of the capital cost of investments in power generation systems, including the solar energy photovoltaic, small modular nuclear reactors, solar energy concentrated, the wind force and water (small hydro, river, wave and tidal power plants). Credits are also available for stationary electricity storage systems (as long as they don’t use fossil fuels), low-carbon heating equipment, and zero-emission commercial vehicles, such as heavy construction equipment. hydrogen or electrically used in mining or construction.
The government also states in the statement that it will enter into consultations about: “other eligible technologies (e.g. large-scale nuclear and large-scale hydropower)”. It will announce the concrete details of what those technologies will be in its 2023 budget.
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As proposed, the investment tax credit will cost C$6.7 billion (US$5 billion) over five years starting in 2023-24. The upgrade also includes up to C$1.28 billion over six years for the Canadian Impact Assessment Agency and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission to increase capacity and improve assessment effectiveness.
“The recording of the nuclear energy in tax relief on investments in clean energy technologies is a big step forward for the sector and good news for the climate and the economy”, said John Gorman, president and CEO of the Canadian Nuclear Association (CNA). “It confirms what we have been saying at the CNA for years: that the… nuclear energy It’s clean energy and it should be an important part of Canada’s strategy to maintain energy security while reducing emissions towards net zero.”
The fiscal update comes the same week that Ontario Power Generation (OPG) filed for planning permission to build Canada’s first commercial grid-scale SMR in Darlington, Ontario, which is expected to start in 2028. OPG President and CEO Ken Hartwick said the “powerful” combination of federal and provincial government support directed a “strong message” on the development of clean energy. “These measures will help ensure the successful completion of this critical infrastructure while reducing costs for taxpayers,” said.
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This week, Ontario’s Energy Minister Todd Smith led a trade mission to the Czech Republic, Poland and Estonia, including talks about SMRs. He also highlighted the export opportunities for Ontario’s nuclear supply chain at the International Atomic Energy Association ministerial conference in Washington DC. “We welcome the new clean energy tax incentives included in the federal government’s Fall Economic Statement,” said.
“We encourage the federal government to continue taking measures that complement our approach, including extending these measures to all nuclear technologies and power generation. Hydropowerin recognition of the role they are already playing in meeting our growing energy needs.”he added.
News taken from: World Nuclear News / Free translation from English by world energy trade
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