Galloping Global Adjustment charge on your Ontario electricity bill

Galloping Global Adjustment 
As noted in the previous posting, over the past eight years (2007 to 2015) Ontario electricity ratepayers have seen the charge for the basic commodity increase by $6 billion dollars every year — that’s like  the cost of moving 12 gas plants, every year.  This huge jump happened without a clear indication from our political leaders as to the cause, other than blaming neglect of the system on their predecessors and the objective to save the world from climate change.
So what is the real story?
The following estimates may provide the reader some clarity as to the source of most of those costs.   Please bear in mind that some of these are estimates as the information is not readily available from our less than transparent government entities.

  1. The provincial portion of the HST obviously added a lot to the costs and represents about $950 million of the $6 billion.
  2. The addition of over 2,000 MW of solar power generation added about $1.4 billion to the annual costs
  3. The addition of about 4,000 MW of wind power generation added around $1 billion to annual costs.
  4. Agreeing to allow previously unregulated hydro owned by Ontario Power Generation (OPG) to be regulated added $250/350 million.
  5. Granting a rate increase to cover OPG pension and benefit shortfalls added $300 million
  6. Directing the conversion of two OPG coal plants to biomass added $150 million annually
  7. Creating a surplus of generation that is exported without the GA being included added $1.7 billion in costs.
  8. Paying OPG for spilled hydro, Bruce Nuclear for steaming off nuclear, wind generators for constraining, etc. probably cost $300 to $400 million
  9. Moving two gas plants amortized over, say, 20 years would cost about $50 million.
  10. Spending $4.1 billion on Big Becky and Mattagami amortized over 50 years added about $75 million
  11. Paying idling gas plants as much as $15,000 per month per MW of capacity to back up wind turbines probably added $500 million per annum.

While this actually doesn’t include all of the actions directed by the Energy Minister and also indicates a total that exceeds the $6 billion in increased costs from 2007 to 2015, some of the costs listed above have not yet entered the billing system.
Electricity rates are forecast to increase in excess of 10% in 2016 by the end of the year, meaning the cost of the raw commodity, electricity, will reflect the galloping “Global Adjustment” going forward.
©Parker Gallant
January 2016

What's your reaction?


  • Barbara
    Posted January 29, 2016 8:11 pm 0Likes

    If and when energy storage charges take effect this will increase the cost of electricity for consumers.
    Natural gas “peaker” plants probably will have to pay carbon taxes where as “peaker” plants such as lithium battery facilities will not.
    Renewable energy projects such as wind and solar along with electricity storage are examples of how government policies create and drive markets.

  • Pat Cusack
    Posted January 30, 2016 10:29 am 0Likes

    Tax, tax and more tax!

    • Barbara
      Posted January 30, 2016 5:48 pm 0Likes

      One of the related issues in this situation is TAX AVOIDANCE. With CO2 being taxed then companies look for non-CO2 substitutes to use to store or produce electricity.

      • Barbara
        Posted January 30, 2016 6:11 pm 0Likes

        The Ontario government has granted money to determine if flywheels can be used on a commercial scale to store energy.
        Flywheels are non-CO2 so would avoid CO2 taxes. An example of a DEVISE being used to avoid CO2 issues.
        It is NOT illegal to avoid taxes. To evade taxes is illegal.

  • Greg Latiak
    Posted January 30, 2016 6:03 pm 0Likes

    I was thinking that the brilliance of Ontario compared to places like Germany or Spain is that the subsidies are built into the power rates rather than being a separate charge. So as the government sinks deeper into debt there is no pressure to slash the unaffordable subsidies — they just tighten the screws on the users some more. Like a Ponzi scheme that just keeps going… Much harder to kill and much more destructive.

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