Besides Italy, the Canadian province of Ontario is the only region in the world to roll out smart meters to all its residential customers and to deploy Time-of-Use (TOU) rates for generation charges to all customers who stay with the regulated supply option. TOU rates were deployed as a conservation measure in Ontario, to incentivize customers to curtail electricity usage during the peak period and/or to shift that usage to less expensive mid-peak and off-peak periods, and possibly to reduce overall electricity usage.

The impact evaluation of Ontario’s full-scale roll-out of TOU rates is a three-year project with the following objectives: (i) Quantify the change in energy usage by pricing period for the residential and general service customers (defined below) for a few carefully chosen local distribution companies (LDCs); (ii) Estimate the peak period impacts using the OPA’s summer peak demand definition; (iii) Estimate the elasticity of substitution between the pricing periods and the overall price elasticity of demand.

This report presents the findings from the first year that customers were on TOU rates. The analysis was carried out using data for four LDCs: LDC#1, LDC#2, LDC#3, and LDC#4 which collectively represent roughly half of the provincial population and 47 percent of the provincial electricity usage delivered by Ontario LDCs. These LDCs were selected based on their previous experience with TOU pilots, size and geographic location.

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Impact Evaluation of Ontario's Time-of-Use Rates: First Year Analysis