Ontario Energy Board Issues Decision on Wataynikaneyap Power LP’s First Rates Application

Project to connect remote First Nation communities takes another significant step forward

Yesterday, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) issued its Decision and Order on Wataynikaneyap Power LP’s (WPLP) first electricity transmission rates application related to the construction of roughly 1,736 km of transmission lines and 22 associated stations in northwestern Ontario.

WPLP is a partnership involving 24 First Nations and Fortis Inc.

This transmission project, a priority for the government, will enable 16 remote First Nation communities to be connected to the provincial electricity grid and be served by Hydro One Remote Communities Inc. (HORCI).  These communities are currently provided electricity through diesel generation supplied by either HORCI or independent power authorities.

In its Decision and Order, the OEB approved a Settlement Proposal that was put forward by participants in the hearing. The OEB was satisfied that the terms of the Settlement Proposal should result in reasonable outcomes for WPLP, Ontario electricity transmission service customers and HORCI customers.

The OEB has therefore approved a revenue requirement of $41.5 million , to be recovered as follows:  

  • $20.3 million will be included in the Uniform Transmission Rates (UTR) that are recovered from all Ontario ratepayers.  This part of the revenue requirement relates to the line to Pickle Lake portion of the project, and the rates will take effect on April 1, 2022 when the line to Pickle Lake is expected to go into service.
  • $21.3 million will be recovered through a fixed monthly charge paid by HORCI starting May 1, 2022.  This portion of the revenue requirement relates to the new transmission lines running north from Pickle Lake and Red Lake and directly serve the First Nation communities as the lines are completed. 

Estimated Bill Impacts

Recovery of the 2022 revenue requirement of $41.5 million will result in a small bill increase for Ontario consumers.  The final bill impacts will not be known until later this year.

Based on current information, the estimated total bill increase is:

  • approximately $0.22 per month or 0.18% for a typical residential customer
  • approximately $0.57 per month or 0.15% for a typical General Service (GS < 50 kW) customer consuming 2,000 kWh per month

The transmission rates will remain in effect for one year, and WPLP will need to file further applications for subsequent years.

Additional Information and Resources

About the Ontario Energy Board

The OEB is the independent regulator of Ontario’s electricity and natural gas sectors. It protects the interests of individuals and supports the collective advancement of the people of Ontario. Its goal is to deliver public value through prudent regulation and independent adjudicative decision-making which contributes to Ontario’s economic, social and environmental development.

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