Electricity isn't the problem, it's the answer

A new Electricity Distributors Association report calls for a comprehensive review of the electricity sector and provides a roadmap to initiate sector-wide discussion.

TORONTO, Nov. 15, 2011 /CNW/ - The Electricity Distributors Association of Ontario (EDA) today released its report, Electricity is the Answer, which offers ten recommendations for re-tooling the sector that will lead to economic development, investment and jobs. The report also proposes changes to regulation that can lead to cost savings, innovation and better system reliability.

"Electricity will power Ontario's future, but the current structure and regulation of the province's electricity sector stifles much-needed innovation and investment," says Jim Keech, Chair of the EDA. "Our sector has to get ready for new technologies like electric vehicles and ever-increasing consumer demand."

The report calls on the provincial government to:

  • Review the relationship between the government, the electricity industry and its regulatory agencies; the report proposes that an arms-length relationship is best suited to promote efficiency and more effective decision-making.
  • Remove regulatory restrictions that prevent local electricity utilities from providing other services like municipal water and sewer which can lead to cost savings.
  • Consider an evolutionary approach as the preferred model, as major restructuring of transmission and distribution is not warranted at this time.
  • Consider merging the Independent Electricity System Operator and the Ontario Power Authority or rationalizing their responsibilities.
  • Streamline the regulation of electricity delivery to remove barriers to investment in system repair and upgrades
  • Allow local utilities more flexibility to design and deliver conservation programs that  meet their customers' needs.

"Everything about electricity is changing - the way we make it, move it, measure it and use it," Keech adds. "The government needs to seize this opportunity and start managing the electricity sector as an opportunity, not a problem. We need input from all electricity industry players to create a reliable, affordable and sustainable electricity system for the future."

The full report is available on the EDA Website at www.eda-on.ca

The Electricity Distributors Association (EDA) is the voice of Ontario's local electricity distributors, the publicly and privately owned companies that safely and reliably deliver electricity to over 4.7 million Ontario homes, businesses and public institutions.

SOURCE Electricity Distributors Association

For further information:

contact the EDA's Manager of Marketing, Communications and Media Relations, Kathryn Quail at (905) 265-5337.

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