The Value of Electricity
Are We Getting Value for the Money We Pay?
Electricity is an indispensable necessity and essential to modern life in Canada. We expect it to be there when we need it to power the machines and systems that drive virtually everything we do. We expect that to happen reliably, every time. In exchange, we pay for that power, depending on how much we use. That’s about as much as most of us think about the process.
It is fair to say we have come to take it all for granted. But underlying that reality is a difficult and much more complex question: “Are we getting value for the money we pay?”
That is a debate that is going on all across the country because of increases in the price of electricity. Across Canada we are confronting the need to ensure that the complex system that delivers our electricity is ready as we move forward in a world of technology and economic development.
Canada’s electricity industry, through the Canadian Electricity Association (CEA), is fostering a national conversation on the value of electricity. There are tough decisions coming on the investments required to keep our electricity system reliable. Without a consensus on whether Canadians are getting value for their money, those decisions will become even more difficult.
There are a number of underlying issues CEA believes need to be explored:
- The indispensable necessity of electricity and the benefits it provides including reliability.
- The comparative daily cost of electricity to other household expenditures and the comparative cost in other comparable countries.
- The complexity of the system, with its extensive infrastructure and many thousands of highly skilled people, designed to deliver a crucial necessity seamlessly with no more consumer effort than plugging something in or flipping a light switch.
- The cost of ongoing replacement and maintenance, keeping the integrity of the system whole and its performance reliable.
- The cost of planning ahead and building new facilities to meet the pressures that will come from a growing population and to deliver to our children a safe, reliable electricity system.
Power for the Future, a CEA initiative, is designed to set out these issues and provide information to help Canadians consider ways to determine the value proposition of electricity.
Follow these links to learn more about how the electricity system works: