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Utilities

Electricity

Provincial power generators compete with suppliers in and outside of Ontario; they sell their electricity to large purchasers of bulk power (these comprise the wholesale market administered by the Independent Electricity System Operator). Ontario Power Generation Inc. generates the bulk of the province's electricity supply and sells power directly to industries and municipal utilities. Ontario 's high-voltage electricity transmission system and (largely rural) low-voltage distribution system are owned and operated by the corporation Hydro One.

Infrastructure Highlights

TransAlta Corporation operates a 440-megawatt gas-fired facility at its Regional Cogeneration Plant in Sarnia. The facility is integrated with 135 MW from pre-existing TransAlta facilities. It currently supplies power and steam to local companies including LANXESS, NOVA Chemicals Ltd. and Suncor Energy Products Inc.

TransAlta owns and operates the Bluewater Energy Park, which is located adjacent to the cogeneration plant. TransAlta can provide industries locating in the Energy Park with steam and electrical power at "behind the fence" pricing.

The coal-fired Lambton Generating Station is owned by Ontario Power Generation Inc. As part of the province's commitment to phasing out coal plants, the Lambton Generating Station is slated to close in 2014. Testing of biomass and natural gas feedstocks for the plant are ongoing.

In response to the increasing demand for new electricity generation from the Ontario Power Authority, two gas-fired plants  have located in Sarnia-Lambton. Greenfield Energy and St. Clair Energy, both in St. Clair Township, have contracted capacities of 1,005 Megawatts and 570 Megawatts respectively.

Solar - Enbridge operates the 80 MW Sarnia solar plant in Sarnia; and NextEra Energy Inc. operates two 20 MW solar plants in St. Clair Township. To learn more about the cleantech initiatives taking place in Sarnia-Lambton visit our Energy, Hydrogen, and Nitrogren page.

Industrial Rates

In the Ontario electricity market, the costs of generating, transmitting and distributing electricity are billed separately to consumers. Industries that consume more than 250,000 kilowatt-hours per year pay the hourly wholesale market price, unless they have signed a fixed-rate contract. The wholesale price is determined by the forces of supply and demand and is administered by the Independent Electricity System Operator.

Two utilities provide power to Sarnia-Lambton: the Bluewater Power Distribution Company in Sarnia, Alvinston, Oil Springs, Petrolia, Point Edward and Warwick Township (part); and Hydro One Networks Company elsewhere.

For more information on commercial and industrial electricity rates visit Bluewater Power Distribution Company and Hydro One Networks

Natural Gas

Industrial, commercial and residential customers may buy natural gas from a marketer, a producer or Union Gas Limited, the local utility in Sarnia-Lambton. Whomever you buy from, Union Gas delivers the gas to you. 

Union Gas, a Spectra Energy Company, owns and operates the natural gas storage, transmission and distribution systems in Sarnia-Lambton. A major Canadian utility, it delivers energy and related services to more than one million industrial, commercial and residential customers in more than 400 Ontario communities.

Union Gas also provides natural gas storage and transportation services for other utilities and energy market participants in Ontario, Quebec and the United States. Its Dawn Storage Complex in Sarnia-Lambton is the largest natural gas facility of its type in Canada-and one of the fastest-growing storage hubs in North America. The Dawn facility has a working capacity of over 150 billion cubic feet; it can deliver up to 2 billion cubic feet a day to storage and transportation customers.
 
In St. Clair Township, near the community of Corunna, Enbridge Consumers Gas maintains one of the largest underground gas storage operations in Canada, with the capacity to store nearly 100 billion cubic feet of gas in ten storage reservoirs. Enbridge Consumers Gas is a regulated utility that distributes natural gas to 1.4 million customers in the greater Toronto, Niagara and Ottawa regions.

Industrial and Commercial Rates

Typically, a gas customer's billing includes: the purchase price of the commodity consumed; a transportation charge for conveying gas from Western Canada to the Union Gas distribution system; a storage charge; and a charge for delivery to the customer's facility. There is also a monthly fixed charge to cover ongoing standard services. For large-volume purchases, industrial contract customers negotiate directly with Union Gas.

For more information, please visit the Union Gas business website. For large industry visit the Union Gas large business website.
 

Potable Water

Approximately 90% of Sarnia-Lambton residents obtain potable water (suitable for drinking) from treatment plants. These plants draw water from the head of the St. Clair River in the Village of Point Edward and from Lake Huron inlets located in the community of Bright's Grove in eastern Sarnia and from Grand Bend in the northeast corner of the region. The Ontario Clean Water Agency provides under contract to the Lambton Area Water Supply System the operational services to maintain the system infrastructure and regulatory compliance.

The average combined daily intake of the Pt. Edward and Bright's Grove plants varies from a low of 53,000 cubic metres in mid-winter to a maximum of 164,000 cubic metres in mid-summer.

Potable water is distributed through some 250 kilometres of pipeline, which extend throughout much of Sarnia-Lambton. The three major distribution systems are the West Lambton System, the East Lambton System and the Petrolia System.

Sewage Treatment

Sanitary sewage treatment facilities are located throughout the municipalities of Sarnia-Lambton. Industrial operations that generate unacceptable contaminants are required to pretreat such waste before putting the effluent into the municipal sewer system.