In July Ontario rolled out its Fair Hydro Plan which aimed at helping reduce the cost of electricity in Ontario. This program has reduced the costs of hydro by an estimated 25% for residential consumers, small businesses, and farms. However large businesses and industry are still left with the inflated hydro costs with no immediate help from Government.
There are alternatives however that can help industry cut their costs. The main one is the Industrial Conservation Initiative (ICI) that is advertised as being able to reduce your bill by 33% by reducing your electricity consumption during peak times. ICI is available for industries with peak demand over 500 kW (with some restrictions) and adjusts the way your business pays for the Global Adjustment (GA). This may sound like a great initiative to be a part of, but without a detailed review of your electricity consumption you may end up paying more than before. Other Initiatives include Save On Energy programs, the Industrial Accelerator program, and the Northern Industrial Electricity Rate program.
A Certified Energy Manager (CEM), either in-house or as an external consultant may be useful to help identify energy or cost saving opportunities in your business and navigate applicable initiatives and programs. Some programs may even help to cover the costs associated with a CEM.
The bottom line is electricity prices in Ontario have not gone down for large business and industry, but there are options available to reduce your bill if you seek them out and truly understand your electricity requirements.