Hydro One on Friday announced its $ 17 billion investment plan to build more reliable power systems across the province, including here in northern Ontario.
The announcement was made in Sudbury, where officials say the five-year investment plan is focused on improving reliability for customers and reducing the number of power outages.
“We expect that we plan to achieve a 25% reduction in outages for our rural customers on the distribution grid,” said David Lebeter, COO of Hydro One.
“We are investing in network resilience to deal with climate change, and we are investing to meet customers’ desire to create a future-proof system so that they can meet their needs today and in the future.”
Hydro One says it will modernize the distribution system equipment, which includes replacing about 65,000 wood poles.
Lebeter says the Greater Sudbury area is very different from southern Ontario and the geography sometimes makes restoring service after a power outage quite difficult.
“This population is dispersed… there are a lot of forests and a lot of rivers. This means we have to travel a lot more conductor kilometers and use more poles, ”said Lebeter.
“This makes it more difficult to restore power during an outage, which is unfortunate for our customers, so we are making investments that will reduce the duration of these outages and reduce the number of outages. “
Representatives of the Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce say this will reassure all Hydro One customers knowing they will benefit from more reliable service.
“Definitely for businesses that depend on Hydro One,” said House Speaker Debbi Nicholson.
“They can rest assured that they will have a reliable source of electricity in the future and for residents who are hydro one customers, they will know that they can rest assured that they will not have a brownout. and blackout. and things like that. “
Officials say the improvements will be completed by 2023.