The price is increasing by approximately $4.42 per month on the “electricity” line, and about 3.4 per cent on the total bill, for a household that consumes 800 kWh per month, the Ontario Energy Board states. Electricity prices make up about 60 per cent of the total bill of households using 800 kWh/month.
The new price for peak time (weekdays, 7 a.m.-11 a.m. and 5 p.m.-7 p.m.) is 17.5 cents per Kwh, up 1.4 cents. For off-peak time (weekdays, 7 p.m.-7 a.m., weekends and holidays) it will be 8.3 cents per kWh, up 0.3 cents.
The off-peak price remains less than half the on-peak price. This means customers who shift use to evenings and weekends save 9 cents per kWh. The typical Ontario time-of-use household uses about two-thirds of its power during off-peak hours, and the off-peak price remains largely unchanged.
“Through recent OEB consumer research, Ontarians have signaled a need for pricing that provides greater incentives to conserve,” the OEB states in its announcement. “Giving customers incentives and opportunities to manage their bills by shifting their time of electricity use is a key objective of the OEB’s price plan.”
Household consumption has been declining and successful conservation programs are likely a contributing factor. While the Ontario Energy Board continues to use 800 kWh per month for comparison purposes, actual consumption, particularly in large urban centres, is declining. Over the last three years, average residential consumption in the greater Toronto area and other larger cities has been about 700 kWh per month.
These electricity price changes reflect changes in the cost of electricity, the Ontario Energy Board states. They do not affect the cost of transmission or distribution reflected, nor do they affect the regulatory charges or debt retirement charge on bills.
Increased costs from Ontario Power Generation’s nuclear and hydro-electric power plants make up about 40 per cent of this increase. Costs from renewable generation sources are another driver, representing about one-third of the increase.
The Ontario Energy Board reviews electricity prices twice each year based on updated cost forecasts and they are designed to recover the actual cost of electricity.The forecast includes a number of variables, like estimated changes in the total cost of power from Ontario’s diverse electricity supply. Key elements of the Independent Electricity System Operator’s outlook for the power system over the next 18 months, such as forecasts of electricity demand and of new generation sources coming online, are also factored in.