Electricity – You are invited to continue the conversation

The electrification of the north will make economic sense for the region.

THUNDER BAY – On October 18, the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) visited Thunder Bay for a regional electricity forum, which was focused on exploring how electricity can be harnessed to support the growth, resiliency, and vibrancy of communities in the Northwest.

Electricity planning and delivery have dramatically changed in recent years as a result of rapid technological advancement, an increasingly engaged consumer, growth in local electricity resources and climate change policies. Communities, including First Nations and Métis, businesses, and residents, now have increasing opportunities to take control of their energy use and participate in the sector. Shaping the future of Ontario’s electricity system is now a collective effort.

Thank you to the more than 100 participants from a variety of organizations and backgrounds who joined us at the BW Plus Nor’Wester Hotel and Conference. We heard the local perspective from knowledgeable speakers, like Norm Jaehrling, CEO of Pic Mobert First Nation, about the Gitchi Animki hydro project; Iain Angus, councillor for the City of Thunder Bay, on the expected growth in mining, forestry and manufacturing in the Northwest; and Rob Mace, the President and CEO of Thunder Bay Hydro, on new technologies being incorporated into its portfolio, among other expert presenters.

But the value of the forum was more than the presentations we heard – it was also a great opportunity to contribute to discussions, share information and develop a dialogue on how your community can leverage change and innovation in the electricity sector.

Our hope is that this will be a continuing dialogue. Even if you didn’t attend the forum, we invite you to continue the conversation with us. We also encourage you to explore, at ieso.ca, the opportunities to participate with the IESO (through regional planning activities, energy-efficiency programs, funding opportunities, engagement, etc.). We want to hear from you. Your input is important to us and will help inform the future of Ontario’s electricity sector. We are as close as your email – communityengagement@ieso.ca.

Michael Lyle

Vice-President, Planning, Legal, Indigenous Relations and Regulatory Affairs

Independent Electricity System Operator

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