Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Time of Use Smoothes Out Peak Demand

Ontario is moving towards time-of-use electricity rates in an effort to smooth out peak demand periods. This means they will charge users more during peak times and less during non-peak times such as nights, weekends and statutory holidays.

Jane and I purchased our electricity through a retailer and are not subject to this type of pricing for now. However, we are very interested to know when we use electricity the most and what we can do to cut back during peak periods.

What’s the big deal? – When we all use electricity at the same time it of course strains the grid, uses more expensive types of energy and tells power system planners that they need mega generators like nuclear power to keep up with demand. By making peak-use more expensive, electricity providers set appropriate market signals for consumers to cut back.

I registered Jane and me at Toronto Hydro Electric System for a daily account of our time-of-day electricity use. If you live in Ontario, register with your electricity provider and help smooth out the peak.

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