In 2012, the OEB issued its Report of the Board – A Renewed Regulatory Framework for Electricity Distributors: A Performance Based Approach (pdf) (RRFE Report). In the RRFE Report, the OEB concluded that infrastructure planning on a regional basis is required to ensure that regional issues and requirements are effectively integrated into utility planning processes, and indicated that it would establish a process in order to move to a more structured approach to regional infrastructure planning.
The OEB then convened a stakeholder working group - Planning Process Working Group (PPWG) - to prepare a Report to the Board (PPWG Report) that set out the details of an appropriate regional planning process. The PPWG Report identified that changes to the OEB’s regulatory instruments and changes to the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) licence were necessary to support the regional planning process. The OEB endorsed the process set out in the PPWG Report.
In 2013, the OEB issued final amendments to certain Codes which set out the obligations related to licensed distributors and licensed transmitters. The OEB also amended the OPA's licence to reflect its obligations in the regional planning process. Note: Following the merger of the OPA and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO), the IESO’s licence was amended to integrate the sections of the OPA licence setting out its regional planning obligations.
The OEB subsequently created a Regional Planning Process Advisory Group (RPPAG) to continue the work of the PPWG with a focus on considering the need for revisions to the regional planning process established by the PPWG, as required, based on lessons learned.
The work of the RRPAG was placed on hold while the IESO undertook a high level review of the process. In December 2020, the OEB initiated its regional planning process review consultation to consider recommendations from the IESO. The first step in the consultation was re-establishing the RPPAG to assist the OEB in its review. The work of the RPPAG includes further assessing the IESO’s recommendations that the two organizations determined the OEB should take the lead on.
RPPAG Resource Documents to Improve Regional Planning
|Date||Issue / Document|
|December 15, 2022|
The Regional Planning Process Advisory Group (RPPAG) has provided a document entitled “Improving the Electricity Planning Process in Ontario: Enhanced Coordination between Municipalities and Entities in the Electricity Sector” which will support building municipal awareness about the regional planning process and identifies the information that distributors need from municipalities to improve the accuracy of load forecasts used in the planning process. The OEB appreciates the work of the RPPAG.
|November 2, 2022|
The Regional Planning Process Advisory Group (RPPAG) has provided its Load Forecast Guideline that was developed for electricity distributors, transmitters, and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) to use to ensure greater consistency in preparing load forecasts, including consideration of the impact of electrification, for the purpose of regional planning across Ontario. Preparation of the Guideline is a result of a recommendation by the RPPAG. The OEB appreciates the work of the RPPAG and how the Guideline may support other regulatory processes.
|Date||Issue / Document|
|September 29, 2022|
The OEB has issued a Bulletin that clarifies that a local community may choose an alternative solution to the optimal (i.e., most cost effective) solution identified to meet a need determined through a distribution planning or regional planning process, based on local preference. It also provides guidance in relation to how cost responsibility should be addressed in such cases.
Regional Planning Process Review (EB-2020-0176)
The OEB has developed a resource document for stakeholders that provides an overview of the outcomes from the Regional Planning Process Review consultation. Ten documents were either amended or created and this overview includes a link to each.
- Regional Planning Process Review - Overview of Outcomes
- Read more about the OEB's Regional Planning Process Review policy consultation.
Stakeholder Advisory Groups - Regional Planning Process
To learn more about the OEB endorsed Regional Infrastructure Planning process:
- Regional Infrastructure Planning - PPWG Report
- Regional Planning Process Advisory Group (RPPAG) -
In the Notice of Code amendments, the OEB indicated its intent to create a stakeholder standing committee (i.e. RPPAG) to continue the work of the PPWG with a focus on considering the need for revisions to the regional planning process established by the PPWG, as required, based on lessons learned.
- Board letter on RPPAG (pdf) (Jul 25-14)
Presentation delivered to industry and other interest groups/parties, relating to the Regional Infrastructure Planning process (Fall 2013)
- Process Planning Working Group Presentation (pdf)
- Regional Infrastructure Planning - Code Amendments (pdf)
- Distribution System Planning Chapter 5: Consolidated Distribution System Plan Filing Requirements (pdf)
Frequently Asked Questions
Board staff responses to questions asked by the industry regarding the Regional Infrastructure Planning process.
Regional Planning Status Updates - Annual Reports
Annual Reports filed by transmitters identifying the status of Regional Planning:
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-23)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Oct 28-22)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-21)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 2-20)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-19)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-18)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-17)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-16)
- Five Nations Energy Inc. (pdf) (Mar 21-16)
- Great Lakes Power Transmission (pdf) (Nov 25-15)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 25-15)
- Hydro One Networks Inc. (pdf) (Nov 1-14)
Guidelines / templates (Hydro One, IESO)
To access the industry guideline documents / templates on regional infrastructure planning or to review the status of a regional plan you may visit the following websites:
- Hydro One Networks Inc.
- Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO)
Note: Prior to the implementation of the more structured Regional Infrastructure Planning process, a number of regional planning processes were already underway. In these instances, the supporting documentation required may differ. The IESO and one of the Lead Transmitter’s (Hydro One Networks Inc.) have developed documents to align with the process, to the extent possible, during this transition.
Related industry matters
The IESO was asked by the Ontario Minister of Energy to provide recommendations primarily related to stakeholder engagement in the integrated regional energy planning process; specifically, looking at improving the way large energy projects are sited in the province.
To learn more about the Ontario’s Long-Term Energy Plan please visit: http://www.energy.gov.on.ca/en/ltep/
Regulatory Requirements / Licence Amendments
The Board conducted a consultation to develop a policy framework on Regional Infrastructure Planning for Electricity (EB-2011-0043) to be implemented through appropriate amendments to the Transmission System Code ("TSC") and the Distribution System Code ("DSC").
The Board issued a Notice of Amendments (pdf) to the Distribution System Code and the Transmission System Code to implement the Board’s policies related to Regional Planning.
Distribution system code
Code amendments setting out the obligations of licensed distributors related to the Regional Planning process.
- Section 8 - Regional Planning
- Section 8.6 - Continuing Obligations Re Distribution System
- Section 8.5 - Transitions
- Section 8.4 - Monitoring and Reporting
- Section 8.3 - Provision of and Requests for Information
- Section 8.2 - Participation in Regional Planning
- Section 8.1 - Definitions
Transmission system code
Code amendments setting out the obligations of licensed transmitters related to the Regional Planning process.
- Section 3C - Regional Planning
- 3C.4 Transition
- 3C.3 Monitoring and Reporting
- 3C.2 Obligation to Lead Regional Infrastructure Planning Process
- 3.C.1 Definitions and Lead Responsibility Where More than One Transmitter in a Region
Code amendments related to Reliability and Integrity of Transmission System:
- Section 3B - Reliability and Integrity of Transmission System
- Section 3B.1
Code amendments related to Customer Connections:
- Section 6.1 - General Requirements
- Section 6.1.4
- Section 6.1.4(i)
Code amendments related to the redefinition of certain transmission assets to facilitate the implementation of regional plans:
- Section 2.0 - Definition
- Section 2.0.13
- Section 2.0.45A
- Section 3.0 - Application and Interpretation
- Section 3.0.14
- Section 3.0.15
Code amendments related to certain Cost Responsibility changes to facilitate the implementation of regional plans:
- Section 6.3 - Cost Responsibility for New and Modified Connections
Changes related to extension of capital contribution refund period:
- Section 6.3.17
- Section 6.3.17A
- Section 6.2.3
- Section 6.7.8
- Section 6.9.1
Changes related to the removal of section 6.3.6 ("otherwise planned" provision):
Note: The Board also issued a supplementary proposed code amendment related to the removal of section 6.3.6 involving the proposed addition of new sections 6.3.8A, 6.3.8B and 6.3.8C. This webpage will be updated when the Board decides on that proposed amendment.
Transmission System Code Supplementary Proposed Amendments (pdf)
- Section 3B - Reliability and Integrity of Transmission System
Chapter 5 consolidates a distributor’s information on system planning, focussing on the asset management and capital expenditure planning processes used to identify, select, prioritize and schedule all types of investment; and on the resulting integrated 5 year plan, detailing the investments for which costs are proposed for recovery.
Filing Requirements for Electricity Distribution Rate Applications - Chapter 5 (pdf) (starting on pg. 103)
- 5.1 General & Administrative Matters
- 5.1.1 Investment Categories
- 5.1.2 Investments related to renewable energy generation
- 5.1.3 Time of filing
- 5.1.4 Planning in consultation with third parties
- 5.1.5 Performance reporting
The Board has provided a summary chart to inform distributors of the document(s) to be included in the application submitted to the Board:
Licence amendments - Ontario Power Authority (OPA)
Note: on January 1, 2015, the OPA merged with the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO). On March 19, 2015, the IESO’s licence was amended to integrate the relevant sections of the OPA licence.
Regional Planning and Cost Allocation Review (EB-2016-0003)
Read more about the OEB's Regional Planning and Cost Allocation Review policy consultation.
Development of Regional Planning Process
Read more about the development of the regional planning process on the Regional Planning for Electricity Infrastructure (EB-2011-0043) consultation webpage.
If you have a complaint, concern or question about the regulatory requirements as they relate to the regional infrastructure planning process, you may contact the OEB at:
If you are not a market participant and have general questions or complaint about the regional infrastructure planning process, you may contact the OEB at:
- OEB Consumer Relations: 1-877-632-2727 (toll-free within Ontario) or 416-314-2455
Other agencies / parties also play a role in relation to regional infrastructure planning. Depending on the nature of your concern or question, one of the following agencies may be able to assist you, particularly if it relates to the regional infrastructure planning process steps: