Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited

Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited

May 11, 2006 11:04 ET

Toronto Hydro wants this to be the summer for opting in and taking a load off

TORONTO--(CCNMatthews - May 11) - TORONTO HYDRO today introduced two new programs - peakSAVER Distributed Energy (DE) and peakSAVER Air Conditioning (AC) - that will enable one of Canada's largest municipal electrical utilities to automatically shave peak demand during periods when the hometown electricity grid is stressed.

"We're committed to reducing peak demand in the city of Toronto by 250 megawatts by 2007, and our new peakSAVER programs for businesses are an integral part of our overall strategy," said David O'Brien, President and Chief Executive Officer, Toronto Hydro Corporation. "With peakSAVER, customers can take action to reduce electricity demand for the sake of our environment."

O'Brien stated at a news conference that Toronto Hydro will likely meet its target to reduce peak demand in the city before the end of next year. "This is a way for everyone in the city, whether they're business people or home-owners, to take action in response to the Province's call for electricity conservation during summer heat waves."

peakSAVER DE is an opt-in program that allows commercial customers who use between 1,000 and 4,999 kilowatts of electricity per month to switch on their stand-alone generators and offset some of the electricity from the grid.

peakSAVER AC - the program's residential and small business/commercial version - gives Toronto Hydro the ability to remotely "cycle down" homeowners' central air-conditioners, water heaters and pool pumps when the electricity system is stretched. A special wireless device installed on homeowners' air conditioning systems, which will slow down the system for a short period until peak demand has been eased. In exchange for permission to manage their system, homeowners will receive a $25 incentive.

"The McGuinty government is committed to creating a culture of conservation in Ontario and to reducing our peak load, particularly during the summer months," said Energy Minister Donna Cansfield. "Congratulations to Toronto Hydro for developing this innovative program. Increased conservation through programs like peakSAVER will help address our city's energy needs."

To demonstrate how the system works, Toronto Hydro showed media at a briefing session held this morning what the grid looked like before, and after, more than eight megawatts of electricity were removed from the system by remote control.

Organizations that are currently participating in the peakSAVER DE program include Humber Treatment Plant, North York General Hospital, Enbridge, Ontario Power Generation, Toronto Hydro-Electric System, First Canadian Place, Yorkdale Shopping Centre, Royal York Hotel, and Air Canada Centre.

"With peakSAVER, we are giving Torontonians the ability to do the right thing for the environment. Opting in is absolutely free, it's green and it's putting businesses and homeowners in the driver's seat in terms of helping to ease our electricity supply challenges," added O'Brien.

(*) Photos and b-roll are available with this press release.



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