Market Renewal – Single Schedule Market
Ontario’s use of the two schedule system is unique in North American energy markets. Ontario uses an unconstrained schedule to set price and a constrained schedule to establish dispatch. The unconstrained schedule delivers a uniform price of electricity across the province but does not fully reflect actual conditions (like transmission limitations) on the power grid. The constrained schedule used for dispatch must fully account for system conditions in order to deliver a reliable supply of power to Ontarians.
The two schedule system results in two key challenges for Ontario. First, when price and dispatch aren’t aligned, decisions that make financial sense to market participants may not provide the greatest benefit to the system. By moving to a single schedule, this misalignment can be resolved.
Second, the two schedule system results in a complex series of out of market payments to resolve differences between price and dispatch. This complexity has prevented other market improvements, like a day-ahead market, from being implemented in the past. Moving to a single schedule system will reduce complexity and facilitate further market enhancements.