ST THOMAS – Starting today, energy users in the province of Ontario will be paying 3% more for electricity. This equates to an extra $4 every month per household.
During peak hours, consumers will now pay 12.9 cents per kilowatt hour. The Ontario Energy Board – which sets prices for energy in Ontario – attributed the increase in part to the growing proportion of green energy to the supply mix.
“When you provide rich subsidies for uneconomical green energy projects, retail prices for energy are going to go up; that’s unavoidable,” said Elgin-Middlesex-London MPP Jeff Yurek. “The real question is why does this government stubbornly stick to its ill-conceived Green Energy Act?”
Of the 12.9 cents per kilowatt hour to be paid by electricity consumers, the global adjustment is expected to contribute 6.23 cents. The global adjustment – although not expressed as a line item on household electricity bills – is a cost included in electricity rates that represents the difference between the market rate and the subsidized rate the government pays for energy.
“When this government took power, electricity rates hovered around 4 cents per kilowatt hour,” noted Yurek. “They’ve now more than doubled making hydro rates in Ontario the second highest in North America.”
While households continue to struggle with the rising costs of living, high energy rates have major implications for businesses. A recent Canadian Federation of Independent Business survey showed 49 per cent of its Ontario members identified energy as a major cost constraint.
“We have a province with 600,000 people unemployed who must stretch their household budgets amid rising energy costs and businesses that are hesitant to hire because their energy costs are so high. If this government was serious about job creation and economic growth, they’d quit subsidizing green energy projects and develop a plan to bring energy rates down,” concluded Yurek.
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