By Tammy Schneider
The Ontario Energy Board has announced new prices for electricity, effective Nov. 1, under the Regulated Price Plan. These rates apply to households and small businesses.
Prior to the pandemic, ratepayers paid for electricity based on their time-of-use. The rates were 10.1 cents per kilowatt hour for off-peak use, 14.4 cents per kilowatt hour for mid-peak use and 20.8 cents per kilowatt hour for high-peak use. On March 24, the province announced a 24-hour/seven days per week electricity rate of 10.1 cents per kilowatt hour would apply to all time-of-use customers to provide some economic relief. This order was put in place for 45 days, and on May 6 was extended until May 31.
On May 30, Greg Rickford, minister of energy, northern development and mines and minister of Indigenous affairs issued a statement explaining the terms of the new COVID-19 recovery rate, to take effect on June 1, 2020.
“To extend this support responsibly, we will introduce a fixed electricity price, known as the COVID-19 Recovery Rate, of 12.8 cents per kWh, which will be automatically applied to all time-of-use customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” said Rickford. “This fixed electricity price will be in place from June 1 – October 31, 2020.”
Effective Nov. 1, Ontario is going to time-of-use (TOU) and tiered electricity pricing.
The government is permitting most hydro customers to choose between time-of-use and tiered pricing.
The new rate for customers, who opt for time-of-use pricing, is 10.5 cents/kWh for off-peak use, 15 cents/kWh for mid-peak use and 21.7 cents/kWh for use of electricity during high-peak hours, the OEB announced, as of Nov. 1.
Off-peak hours run between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. on weekdays, all weekends and holidays. Mid-peak rates will apply between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays and the highest charge for electricity will apply during the high-peak period of 7 a.m. and 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays.
Customers who are interested in changing to a tiered pricing should check with their electricity provider. Customers who choose to pay on the tiered system will pay 12.6 cents per kilowatt hour for the first 1,000 kilowatt hours (750 kilowatt hours for non-residential customers) they use each month, and 14.6 cents per kilowatt hour over and above the first 1,000 (750 kilowatt hours for non-residential customers).