OEB authorizes smart sub-metering

TORONTO, ONTARIO - The Ontario Energy Board issued a Decision and Order authorizing Exempt Distributors (e.g., landlords) to conduct discretionary metering activities (install smart sub-metering systems for individual units). The use of the smart sub-metering systems to bill tenants is only permissible with the express written consent of the tenants.

The Decision and Order provides landlords with clear direction on the conditions necessary for using smart sub-metering systems to bill tenants.

In the case of residential complexes: the tenant's written consent must be voluntary and informed; an energy audit must be conducted by an independent third party; additional details such as a corresponding rent reduction must be provided; and a licensed smart sub-metering provider must be used.

In the case of commercial complexes, the tenant's consent must be in writing, and meters must be installed by a licensed smart sub-metering provider.

The Board's Decision and Order makes it clear that the smart sub-metering of residential and commercial complexes was not authorized if the smart sub-metering system was installed prior to today's decision and on or after November 3, 2005. It does, however, recognize existing written consent in the case of commercial complexes given at the time the tenant leased the property.

Residential and commercial complexes are typically supplied with electricity by licenced local distribution utilities through a bulk meter. This meter records all of the electricity flowing into the building without any differentiation between users. Smart sub-metering systems are designed to enable the allocation of electricity usage by individual tenants on a unit-by-unit basis.


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