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COVID-19 impacts on Ontario's electricity system

As the weather gets warmer and the province reopens, Ontario’s electricity us is also starting to ramp back up. Here are a few insights on the system as a whole, as well as analysis on the business and residential sectors.

As the weather gets warmer and the province reopens, Ontario’s electricity use is also starting to ramp up. At its lowest, weekday electricity use fell about 12% compared to similar days pre-pandemic. The latest data shows electricity use at approximately 5% lower.

For businesses, several warm days and even a heatwave in May have meant increased electricity use. Select businesses allowed to reopen starting the week of May 18 also contributed to the gradual recovery of electricity use as seen in the graph below.

Typically, Ontario’s residential sector makes up a third of total provincial electricity use. During heatwaves however, residential electricity use can increase its contribution to up to 45%.

The arrival of warm weather and A/C use have together contributed to higher electricity use from Ontarians at home. During a heatwave in late May, residential consumers added approximately 1,400 MW to Ontario's total electricity use.