Ontario Chamber of Commerce "leading the charge" on increased affordability and transparency for energy system

Business group calls on government to adopt auction style process when procuring for future sustainable energy supply   

TORONTO, Dec. 14, 2016 /CNW/ - Today, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) is calling on the provincial government to take bold steps to address the affordability challenge of energy pricing in Ontario. In its submission to the Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP), the organization is calling on government to ensure that future policies regarding energy pricing are affordable, transparent and flexible. One of the submission's top recommendations includes a call for the adoption of a capacity market system.

Under the new Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP), businesses are already facing additional costs. Since the 2013 LTEP, industrial rates in the province have increased by 16 percent, while the rate for households and small businesses have climbed by 25 percent. The OCC and its members have consistently reported that the price of electricity is undermining business' capacity to grow, hire new workers, and ultimately remain competitive.

"The Province is at a pivotal point in its planning process regarding the future energy needs of Ontario and it is imperative that future policies respect the concerns of businesses and support future economic growth," said Allan O'Dette, President and CEO of the OCC.

Ontario's energy system would benefit from the implementation of a capacity market. Under this structure there would be significant cost-savings for Ontario's energy consumers through procuring shorter term supply on a cost efficient basis. For a capacity market to be successful in Ontario, the system would feature an auction style process where resources, such as wind, solar, natural gas and demand side resources such as efficiency are compensated for the potential energy they could produce.

"As the provincial government seeks to find solutions to the province's energy challenges, Ontario must strive to balance objectives regarding climate change, renewable resources and maintaining a diverse supply mix without forfeiting the competitiveness and transparency of the capacity market system," added O'Dette. "This will result in increased accountability and confidence in the energy market for Ontario businesses."

While the Ontario government is to be commended for some of the results it has achieved on the energy file (such as being a world leader in renewable energy resources) the status quo is presently unsustainable for ratepayers.

Read the submission

SOURCE Ontario Chamber of Commerce

For further information: Rachel Strong, Senior Communications Advisor, Ontario Chamber of Commerce, E: rachestrong@occ.ca, T: 416.482.5222 ext. 2470

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http://www.occ.on.ca

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