Since July 1, 2006, the federal government is offering individuals a non-refundable 15% tax credit to cover the cost of a monthly (or longer duration) public transit pass for commuting on buses, streetcars, subways, commuter trains, and local ferries.
Lately we’ve been hearing a lot about “peak demand”. What is it? What about smart meters and time-of-use rates? Well this month, the “We Are Greener Together” campaign is raising awareness about “peak demand” and what we can do as neighbours to help manage Ontario’s energy consumption more efficiently.
Smart meters and Time-of-Use rates are new energy management tools that will enable you to help smooth “peak demand”. When we’re all using a lot of electricity at the same time we create “peak demand” periods. And supplying electricity at those peak times has a range of impacts:
It adds to our electricity costs because higher demand leads to higher prices.
It's hard on the environment because meeting the peaks may require the building of additional electricity generation plants.
It adds to the amount of new generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure Ontario must build; and consumers must pay for.
It puts a strain on our electricity system.
Time-of-Use pricing rewards you for using electricity during low-demand periods whenever possible. These Time-of-Use rates – off-peak, mid-peak and on-peak, will vary between summer and winter.So working together to reduce our use at peak times makes good sense.
You won’t be able to shift all of your electricity use away from peak demand periods, but the more you are able to shift, the more you can manage your costs and contribute to lower overall peak electricity prices for everyone.
Where to start? Run the dishwasher before you go to bed and let it run through the night!
Come on, Ontario! Let’s shift our energy use! By implementing a few steps in your everyday life you will lower your energy consumption, and save you money simply by adjusting the time you do normal household tasks. Shift your high energy consumption activities to earlier in the morning or late at night rather than mid-day.
What exactly can you do to see results? Check out our Tips for Saving page for some great tips but here are just a few ideas of things you can do to get started:
Wait to do the laundry until after 9:00pm or on the weekend, if this is not feasible, at least wait until after 7:00pm, when energy is in an off-peak time.
Cooking in your microwave uses two-thirds less energy than your stove. It also doesn’t cause your house to become unbearably hot! Be a speedy chef!
Recharge batteries, cell phones and MP3 players overnight – be sure to unplug them when they’re fully charged.