Looking for truth in Ontario’s “complex electricity system”
Disappearing data on electricity prices is worrying
The Ontario Auditor General’s report released last week blasted the Energy Ministry for the Smart Meter debacle and then blasted them for the lack of data feeds. It now appears that we have another problem with data related to the market price found on the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) website as I discovered.
Here’s what happened: the first data point I looked at was the IESO website page, “Power Data” at 12:18 AM, December 13, 2014. It told me that the highest On-peak rate up to early morning on December 13, 2014 was $643.00 (64.3 cents/kWh) as per the following (taken from that page):
Monthly HOEP Peaks
8 a.m. to 8 (M-F)
Now, just a few days ago I reported that on hour 18 of December 4, 2014, the Hourly Ontario Electricity Price or HOEP had climbed to $986.76 (98.7 cents/kWh), so I decided to visit another IESO page that carries daily, weekly and monthly summaries. This is what the Daily Summary sheet for December 4 2014 said.
|ONTARIO ZONE MARKET PRICES2|
|Energy Prices ($/MWh)||DAILY||ON PEAK||OFF PEAK|
The “Daily Summary” gave me hope that the posting on the “Power Data” page was simply an input error. I decided to confirm that by going to the HOEP report for December 4, 2014. Imagine my surprise when hour 18 on December 4, 2014 indicated that the peak in that hour was changed to $489.27 (48.9 cents/kWh). Here is the statistic on that hour taken directly from the report.
What does this mean? The IESO (ADMIN) decided the HOEP peak for the month of December that occurred on December 4, 2014 at hour 18 no longer exists. The failed data interface in the electricity sector that the Auditor General pointed out about the “smart meters” and the “smart grid” seems to be spreading.
I am confident that our Minister of Energy Bob Chiarelli would simply brush my observation aside by suggesting that, as he said in the legislature, “The electricity system is very complex, it’s very difficult to understand.”
Perhaps Bob will pick a time to sit down with me over a “Timmies” coffee and attempt to explain this one, but I sincerely believe it is too complex for him to understand, too.
December 13, 2014