The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) may soon start exploring ways to implement a new ultra-low overnight energy plan at the behest of Ontario’s Energy Minister, Todd Smith. As well as providing ways for residential consumers and shift workers in particular to save money on their energy bills, a reduction in overnight electricity prices would also prove a significant benefit to EV owners in Ontario, who stand to save money during off-peak hours when charging their electric vehicles overnight at home.
Canada’s federal government has already decreed that half of all new car sales nationwide should be zero-emission by 2030, that figure rising to 100 per cent by 2035 as Canada aims to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 in an effort to fight climate change. But while EV sales remain strong in British Columbia and Quebec, Ontario’s EV market has struggled to keep up, with provincial government rebates having been axed in 2018.
While not a conclusive solution, a drop in costs for overnight charging, as well as benefitting existing EV owners, could provide additional incentive for prospective EV owners too.
“Helping Ontarians keep more money in their pockets is a priority for our government,” Minister of Transportation Caroline Mulroney explains. “This new initiative will help electric vehicle owners save on costs, while also supporting the use of these environmentally-friendly vehicles across the province. As we build Ontario’s transportation network for the future, we continue to invest in low-carbon travel options that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and get people where they need to go.”
As per an official letter, Mr Smith has requested the OEB examine the possibility of a new ‘Time-of-Use’ energy plan that would reduce rates during off-peak hours, and report back on its findings by April. Such a plan, if implemented, could potentially become operational within 12 months.
“Our government has reversed the trend of skyrocketing electricity prices and given families and businesses more control when it comes to their energy bills,” Mr Smith explains. “Introduction of a new ultra-low overnight price plan that would benefit shift workers and support EV adoption is our next step as we focus on helping electricity customers save money and take more control of their energy bills.”