Opportunity for electric utilities

June 4, 2015

The electricity sector is recognizing opportunities to innovate in areas of demand response, the facilitation of distributed generation and electric cars, optimization of asset use, fault detection, mitigation and storage[1].  How can the provincial regulator support innovation and value creation in Ontario’s LDCs?

LDCs should be encouraged to embrace the transition to a new energy future and extract value out of distributed energy.  They should work hard to keep the customers they have, building on the high level of trust that they enjoy as an energy service provider today.

As natural monopolies, LDCs generally have not learned to engage their customers well. Engagement means more than sending a bimonthly bill and sponsoring the local hockey team. Smart meters offer a tremendous platform for engagement, individualized service and growing happy customers as LDCs help them manage their energy bills.

[1] Electric Utility Innovation: Toward Vision 2050 (2015) Canadian Electricity Association http://powerforthefuture.ca/electricity-411/innovation/adding-to-the-innovation-conversation/