electricity demand

Stretching the Duck: How rising temperatures will change the level and shape of future electricity consumption

This paper examines how rising temperature due to climate change will affect the demand for electricity through mid- and end-century. We extend recent literature by directly incorporating adaptation in the form of increased air conditioner penetration into temperature responsiveness and focussing on changes to both the level and timing of future electricity demand. The latter is found to be of greater importance in colder countries, where the level effect is dampened by offsetting reductions in heating demand from warmer winters. Seasonal peaks are projected to shift from winter to summer and the diurnal range of hourly demand expands, exacerbating an increasing need for flexibility coming from the supply side due to a growing share of variable renewable energy.

Canadian electricity markets during the COVID-19 pandemic: An initial assessment

This paper examines the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on electricity markets across select Canadian provinces with available data. Using high frequency electricity data, we find electricity demand declined by roughly 10% in Ontario, and by about 5% in Alberta, British Columbia, and New Brunswick. On the supply side, in Alberta we find reductions from some natural gas plants and an increase in net generation from the oil sands region, while Ontario sees an increase in net electricity exports. Policy implications include potential rate impacts due to fixed charges spread over a smaller rate base, the potential use of electricity data as a real-time economic indicator during the pandemic, and a call to arms to make electricity data across all Canadian provinces more readily available.

Location matters: Daylight saving time and electricity demand

The primary rationale for daylight saving time (DST) has long been energy savings. Whether it achieves this goal, however, remains a subject of debate. Recent studies, examining only one location at a time, have shown DST to increase, decrease or leave overall energy use unchanged. Rather than concluding the effect is ambiguous, this paper is the first to test for heterogeneous regional effects based on differences in (natural) sun times and (societal) waking hours. Using a rich hourly data set and quasi-experimental methods applied across Canadian provinces, this paper rationalizes the differing results, finding region-specific effects consistent with differences in sun times and waking hours. DST increases electricity use in regions with late sunrises and early waking hours.