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Renewing Ontario’s post-2020 electricity demand management framework

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The conservation programs under the Interim Framework are set to expire at the end of 2020, and there is an urgent need to develop a new electricity conservation and demand side framework to avoid unnecessary electricity system costs and greenhouse gas emissions.

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Renewing Ontario’s post-2020 electricity demand management framework

  1. 1. The Honourable Minister Greg Rickford Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines 99 Wellesley St W, Toronto Ontario, M7A 1W3 Re: Renewing Ontario’s post-2020 electricity demand management framework Dear Minister Rickford, We are writing to support the renewal and improvement of Ontario’s electricity conservation and demand management framework. The conservation programs under the Interim Framework are set to expire at the end of 2020, and there is an urgent need to develop a new electricity conservation and demand management framework to avoid unnecessary electricity system costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Ontario’s electricity system is facing new cost pressures due to peak demand periods and transmission constraints in demand growth centres.1 And the retirement and refurbishment of nuclear generators will create new grid constraints and increase emissions from natural gas generation, undermining the province’s Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan. Now is the time to develop a new, Made-in-Ontario approach to efficiency, with a clearer focus on minimizing electricity system costs and maximizing ratepayer value. We offer our support for the development of a new approach to electricity efficiency and demand management based on the following principles: 1) Maximize the value of strategic demand reduction. A new framework can target demand reductions to particular times and locations to avoid the most expensive electricity system constraints. This strategic approach should be part of a strategy that invests in all energy efficiency opportunities that are lower cost than generating and transmitting electricity.2 2) Recognize the multiple benefits of energy efficiency. A strategic approach to demand reduction will put money in the wallets of consumers, drive efficiencies and performance in business operations, and create good jobs. The framework should recognize the multiple benefits of energy efficiency, and design performance criteria and programs to realize these benefits.3 3) No disruption of program delivery capacity. To ensure electricity conservation and demand management can play a valuable role in the future, it is vital that the province avoids a cancellation of programs currently in the market until a new framework is designed and ready to be implemented. Uncertainty and abrupt program cancellations will break consumer and industry confidence, and result in the loss of industry expertise and delivery capabilities. A post-2020 framework based on these principles will help restore Ontario to a leadership position in providing the affordable and sustainable power needed to attract and create jobs. Equally important, it will generate significant bill savings for energy consumers. Sincerely, Efficiency Canada 1 The IESO 2020 Annual Planning Outlook projects a summer capacity shortfalls starting in 2023 that can be alleviated through energy efficiency, and transmission limitations in the Greater Toronto Area, eastern Ontario, and demand pressures in Kingsville- Leamington, Brampton and southern Caledon. 2 The 2019 Achievable Potential Study shows that 17 TWh and 2100 MW of energy and capacity savings are cost-effectively available by 2030, costing only 3.3 cents for every kwh saved. 3 See International Energy Agency, Capturing the Multiple Benefits of Energy Efficiency.

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