Ontario exploring lower overnight electricity rate to promote electric vehicles

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Ontario’s Energy Minister Todd Smith has asked the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) to provide him with options to implement a new “ultra-low overnight Time-of-Use electricity price plan”. According to the Ford government, this new price plan could help shift workers and residential consumers that use more electricity at night save money while supporting electric vehicle (EV) adoption, by reducing overnight EV charging costs when province-wide electricity demand is lower.

“Introduction of a new ultra-low overnight price plan that would benefit shift workers and support EV adoption is our next step as we focus on helping electricity customers save money and take more control of their energy bills,” said Energy Minister Todd Smith.

A public consultation on the proposal is underway.

Delivery of a new ultra-low overnight price is possible as Ontario continues to have excess electricity during overnight hours, says the province. Shifting electricity use to these hours would make better use of Ontario’s clean electricity supply when province-wide demand is low, increasing grid efficiency and generating value for all ratepayers. An ultra-low overnight rate could also further support decarbonization by using more nighttime electricity, which is typically generated from non-emitting resources.

Minister Smith’s letter to the OEB requests the electricity board to examine and report back by April 2022 on potential designs for a new optional Time-of-Use price plan featuring an ultra-low overnight rate. The government will consider the OEB’s report along with stakeholder feedback received through the public consultation on the Environmental Registry of Ontario with the intention of making the new price plan available to customers by April 2023.

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