Toronto | Traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishinaabeg, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat – Environmental Defence expert Keith Brooks, Programs Director, and Kent Elson, Lawyer at Elson Advocacy, will appear before the Standing Committee of the Interior regarding Bill 165, Keeping Energy Costs Down Act, the controversial legislation that, if passed, would allow the government to override the Ontario Energy Board and let Enbridge continue billing natural gas customers for the cost of connecting new homes to gas and expanding gas infrastructure.

Who: Keith Brooks, Programs Director, Environmental Defence & Kent Elson, Lawyer at Elson Advocacy

When: Monday, April  8th, 2024 at 1:00pm

Where:  Queens Park, Committee Room 1. Toronto, ON or via livestream:

Brooks and Elson will speak to the decision of the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) to end the subsidy for methane gas pipelines in new residential developments and reduce spending on gas pipelines generally. 

Background Information:

  • The government’s proposed actions would reinstate a subsidy for methane gas pipelines in residential developments that is funded by existing gas customers. Most developers pay nothing for the pipelines within their developments. There is also no surcharge on new homebuyers to pay off the pipeline costs over time – they pay the same rates as other gas customers. Instead, these connection costs are added to accrued capital costs (called “rate base”) that are paid off by all customers over a 60-year depreciation period. Those connection costs are over $1.3 billion over the next 5 years. This subsidy removes any incentive for developers to install electrical heat pumps, which are the cheapest and lowest-carbon heating option for homes in Ontario.
  • The government also plans to issue a Natural Gas Policy Statement. Enbridge plans to use this to overturn the OEB decision to cut additional unnecessary pipeline spending by $1.25 billion over five years (if that aspect of the OEB decision is not directly overturned by the provincial government beforehand).
  • In total, Bill 165 would lead to an increase in Enbridge’s budget by over $2 billion over 5 years, all of which would be paid for by Enbridge’s existing gas customers, amounting to approximately $600 per household.

ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE ( Environmental Defence is a leading Canadian environmental advocacy organization that works with government, industry, and individuals to defend clean water, a safe climate, and healthy communities.

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For more information or to request an interview, please contact:

Tamara Latinovic, Environmental Defence,