Monday, July 13, 2015

Data-driven thoughts on mitigating electricity rate increases

I started writing what became this post as a quick tumblr hit on a single graph  - as I started writing I  brought in comments on the OCC piece more suited to my coldaircurrents site, and as I felt it necessary to point out the data problems are actually people/organization problems, the work ended up on my more flippant Wordpress site.

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) released a report last week:
Empowering Ontario: Constraining Costs and Staying Competitive in the Electricity Market, takes a look at the driving factors behind rising electricity costs in Ontario.
It’s about time - at best; it may be too late. Near the end of 2015's first quarter I wrote  Ontario's new electricity pricing program essentially taxes businesses to fund social program, which concluded many of the OCC’s members would be walloped by coming pricing changes:
Businesses below 3 MW average monthly peak:
  • get stiffed with the continuance of the debt retirement charge
  • get stiffed with the OESP [Ontario Electricity Support Program]
  • get stiffed with the expansion of the class A program
I’m sure that’s confusing to many, but that "Businesses below 3 MW average monthly peak" class of customer did see the commodity rate it pays for electricity rise 25% from 2014′s second quarter to 2015′s, so I’m not surprised there’s some motivation to address the issues. However, the Chamber has more work to do in getting through the confusion.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Commodity cost of Ontario electricty up 25% in 2015's second quarter

While I haven't been writing much this summer, I have been following Ontario's electricity exploits in reading reports and running the numbers. Recent reports included coverage of remarks from the province's Energy Minister which, along with the most recent figures and the end of June, inspired me to put out a quick post.

Inflation was enormous this past quarter.
I expect the final global adjustment rate for June will be slightly lower than the estimate, but the quarter will still be up almost 25% over last year.


A lot.

I suspect an official explanation of the surge is not pending, This from a report that Ontario's leaders look to build on ol' Premier Peckford's awesome agricultural acumen:
While hydro rates will continue to rise, Chiarelli said consumers have seen the last of sharp increases that averaged about six per cent annually over the last eight years.
Perhaps he meant the increases are going to get so much higher "sharp" will fail to be an inadequate adjective?
The article with that quote was about a push to transfer costs from "Class B" consumers to an expanded "Class A" class that might include greenhouses, and a good chunk of the 25% increase is not from the cost of all electricity rising, but the share of costs transferred to lowly "Class B" consumers rising.