OAKVILLE – On July 13, 2018, the Ontario Government announced the cancellation of 758 renewable energy projects. Mike Gallagher, business manager of Local 793 of the International Union of Operating Engineers, says that this is short sighted for the province. For IUOE Local 793, this is about real people (our members) losing real jobs. Contractors losing hiring power. Companies losing projects that rely on our skilled Operating Engineers. Moreover, it may adversely affect investor confidence in Ontario, seeing it as an unstable market in which to invest.
“On behalf of the 14,958 IUOE Local 793 members, I am disappointed with the new Ontario Government’s decision. Renewable energy projects, by their very nature, are able to provide reliable, near-endless sources of clean, low cost electricity for families and businesses. This is a loss for Ontarians and a loss of long-term employment for Operating Engineers.”
In addition to his role as union leader, Gallagher is a director on the Renewable Energy Alliance of Ontario (REAO), which is a broad coalition of employers, labour and industry groups dedicated to ensuring that renewable energy plays a vital role in Ontario’s energy mix.
In October 2017, Gallagher commented that the Ontario Government’s 2017 Long-Term Energy Plan would ensure, ‘the province will be able to generate the affordable power it needs for current and future demand while reducing greenhouse gases and protecting the health of Ontarians.’
“Renewable energy is extremely cheap to get, with some at 4 to 6 cents per kilowatt hour. If you look at it over time renewable energy will make a profit. How do we approach a new government that says green energy is expensive?”
Local 793 of the International Union of Operating Engineers represents nearly 15,000 highly-skilled crane and heavy equipment operators across Ontario and Nunavut. The union has a head office, banquet hall and training campus in Oakville, and another training campus in Morrisburg, Ontario. Canadian locals of the International Union of Operating Engineers represent more than 50,000 operators and have hundreds of millions of dollars invested in equipment at training centres across the country.
For additional information contact:
Local 793 Business Manager Mike Gallagher
905-469-9299, ext. 2202