Capacity Auction

Starting December 2019, the Capacity Auction will replace the existing Demand Response (DR) Auction to enable competition between additional resource types. For further details on the stakeholder engagement for this transition, please refer to Meeting Ontario’s Capacity Needs: 2020-2024 engagement page.

The IESO’s Capacity Market allows the IESO to deliver reliability to customers, in a cost effective manner, by enabling direct competition between resources while allowing the IESO to transparently adjust to changing system capacity needs.

The Capacity Market will run capacity auctions in order to help meet Ontario’s capacity needs. The first auction will run on December 4, 2019.

There are a number of timelines organizations must adhere to in order to take part in the Capacity Auction.

What do I need to do to participate in Capacity Auction?

Organizations must become authorized as Capacity Auction Participants (CAPs) to take part in the Capacity Auction. Applications must be submitted at least 40 days before the start of the auction. Once authorized, CAPs can participate in all subsequent auctions.

What happens before the Capacity Auction?

Approximately two months prior to the start of the offer submission window for the Capacity Auction, the IESO will publish the Pre-Auction Report.

The Pre-Auction Report includes the following information for each commitment period:

  • Key Milestone Dates, including submission of capacity qualification documents, payment of auction deposit, and date of auction
  • Target Capacity
  • Maximum and Minimum Clearing Prices
  • Capacity Limits
  • Zonal Constraints

See the most current Pre-Auction Report, available on the IESO Public Reports site.

What happens during the Capacity Auction?

The IESO will process all submitted capacity auction offers, determine clearing prices and quantities. The results will be published in the Post-Auction Report which includes the following for each obligation period:

  • Capacity Auction clearing price
  • Amount of MW cleared for each electrical zone
  • List of successful CAPs and their capacity obligations
  • Qualified auction capacity, by participant

The  Post-Auction Report  will be available on the IESO Public Reports site.

What happens post Capacity Auction?

Following the auction, the successful participants will be required to become authorized as Capacity Market Participants (CMPs), which will enable them to register resources to deliver on their Capacity Obligations. The participants will receive availability payments for providing auction capacity, subject to non-performance charges.

Demand Response Specific Information

Past Demand Response Auction information including Pre-Auction Reports, Post-Auction Reports and related documents can be found on the Demand Response Auction webpage.