Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Corrections: on Ontario's 2014 electricity year, and the IESO reporting of it

Ontario's IESO has put out some figures for 2014, and now I'll provide an actually independent look at Ontario's electricity system operation.
Most of the IESO's 2014 Electricity Production, Consumption and Price Data has data that makes sense to the IESO - to the uninitiated the numbers are very misleading. While the IESO has published measurements as per the IESO's insular worldview, it hasn't always showed the discipline to use its own jargon to communicate the numbers honestly.
Total energy consumption of 139.8 TWh in 2014 was slightly lower than 2013 demand levels.
Demand is down 11% since 2005. Supply isn't
Well, no. "consumption" certainly was not 139.8 TWh no matter how loosely one uses the term "energy."

An exploration of the figures from the IESO is necessary as most people will leave the IESO's reporting page less knowledgeable of Ontario's electricity sector than when they arrived - and it would be nice if that weren't so. I'll try not to bore you while actually writing on things I am distinctly qualified to write about: data collection, discipline, and imperfection - which sounds pretty dry, but it it involves courage, integrity, politics, philosophy and that vision thing.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

taxation and market dysfunction in Ontario's electricity system

I wrote in 2014 that a carbon tax could be introduced in Ontario's electricity sector without raising rates. that would prevent the sale, basically at the cost of fuel, from gas-fired generator which Ontarians pay the full cost of running (through the global adjustment).

Last week was the highest net export week Ontario has experienced, averaging 2,865 megawatts each fetching around $20, which is 2 cents/kWh (weeks start on Wednesdays - presumably because the market opened May 1, 2002 - a Wednesday).

The record replaced the previous week's record hourly average of 2,827 megawatts, which was essentially given away at no cost. One difference between the two weeks is that the natural gas generators Ontario contracted with Net Revenue Requirement contracts over the past decade were used much more in the recent week - which brings me back to taxing them.

I realize this is difficult to follow, but I offer this incentive to try: if you are paying electricity rates in Ontario you are paying high rates while providing Americans cheap power.