Ontario hydro hike sought

TORONTO, ONTARIO - The price of electricity from Ontario Power GenerationÂ’s nuclear stations and major hydroelectric plants would go up 14 per cent - or $3.50 on the average homeownerÂ’s monthly bill - if regulators approve.

The rate increase would boil down to a 3 per cent hike for most homeowners, however, because the nuclear and hydroelectric plants account for just 60 per cent of OPGÂ’s electricity output into the provincial grid.

The utility announced that it is seeking permission for the increase, its first since 2005, from the Ontario Energy Board for the period from April 1, 2008 to Dec. 31, 2009.

The board will convene hearings to debate the application, which Ontario Power Generation will argue is necessary to help the Crown-owned company maintain and expands its nuclear and hydroelectric power generating facilities in the coming years without going deep into debt.

Sources said the rate increase would amount to about 4 per cent on the bills for major hydro users, who have long complained OntarioÂ’s electricity prices are too high and risk making the province a less competitive home for industry.


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