Customers eligible for Rate L

Rate L applies to an annual contract whose contract power is 5,000 kilowatts (kW) or more and which is principally for an industrial activity.

These explanations have been simplified. For more details about Rate L, consult section 1 of chapter 5 of the Electricity Rates [PDF 1.7 Mb], approved by the Régie de l’énergie.

Structure of Rate L

Billing for Rate L includes the following:

  • An amount for the energy in kilowatthours (kWh) consumed during the period in question.
  • An amount for the power in kilowatts (kW) measured during the period in question.

Rate L is a monthly rate, which means the amount billed for power is based on a 30-day period.

If applicable, the following may lower your bill:

Credit for supply at medium or high voltage

Hydro-Québec’s rates assume that electricity will be supplied at low voltage. If you have equipment to step down the voltage of the electricity delivered to you or if you use electricity at medium or high voltage, that means reduced costs for Hydro-Québec. In return, you receive a monthly credit on your demand charge. The credit is determined according to the supply voltage.

Adjustment for transformation losses

Hydro-Québec bills you only for the electricity you use. This means it absorbs the transformation losses associated with electricity delivery. If metering occurs before transformation, the electricity billed will include energy lost during transformation that does not reach the customer. So that you do not pay for energy losses, Hydro-Québec grants an adjustment on the billing demand.

The following may also be billed in certain cases:

Optimization charge during the winter period

If in a day during the winter period the maximum power demand exceeds 110% of the contract power, the overrun is subject to a daily optimization charge, expressed in dollars per kilowatt.

For each day during which such an overrun occurs, the amount billed is calculated by multiplying the daily optimization charge by the number of kilowatts making up the highest overrun during the day.

The billed amount will not, however, exceed the monthly optimization charge (or three times the daily optimization charge) applied to the highest maximum power demand recorded during the monthly period in question.

Charge for low power factor

Electrical equipment, whether yours or Hydro-Québec’s, is designed to operate at a relatively stable voltage. Hydro-Québec’s rate structure for large-power customers encourages the maintenance of a power factor of at least 95% at all times.

When large-power customers make less than optimal use of the electricity provided and have a power factor below 95%, Hydro-Québec is forced to supply them with additional power and handle the impacts on the power system. The rate structure allows for Hydro-Québec to bill this excess power to customers.

And when the maximum power demand is below 5,000 kW, customers must still maintain a power factor of 95% or more, or risk being billed at the price of power for excess kVA.

Learn more about your electricity rate

Rate L prices in effect

Breakdown of billing

Applicable in certain cases

  • Optimization charges during the winter period
    • Daily charge $7.53/kW
    • Monthly charge $22.59/kW
  • Credit for supply at medium or high voltage
    • Voltage of 5 kV to less than 15 kV $0.612/kW
    • Voltage of 15 kV to less than 50 kV $0.981/kW
    • Voltage of 50 kV to less than 80 kV $2.190/kW
    • Voltage of 80 kV to less than 170 kV $2.679/kW
    • Voltage of 170 kV or more $3.540/kW
  • Adjustment for transformation losses 17.76¢/kW 

Rates in effect as of April 1, 2017. This table does not replace the Electricity Rates document in any way whatsoever.

Other rates or rate options

If you have a Rate L contract, the following options may be of interest to you.

  • Running-in of new equipment by large-power customers
    If you’re putting new equipment or a new facility into service, your power demand could increase for a few months until your operations have been optimized. Under this option, you can be temporarily exempt from certain rate conditions applicable to power billing.
  • Equipment testing by large-power customers
    If you have to run short tests after adding new equipment or modifying or optimizing existing equipment, your power demand may rise temporarily. Under this option, you don’t have to pay for the excess power used during the test period(s).
  • Additional electricity option for large-power customers
    Under this rate option, you can use electricity beyond your normal consumption to fill a short-term order or meet an exceptional need at a lower price for both energy and power.
  • Interruptible electricity options for large-power customers
    If you can lower your consumption at Hydro-Québec’s request, these options offer a great opportunity for you to save on your electricity bill during the winter period.
  • Economic Development Rate
    Are you planning to build and commission a new facility with a power demand of at least 1,000 kW or to add at least 1,000 kW of power demand to an existing facility? This rate offers a great opportunity for you to save on your electricity bill.

How to request electricity service

Contract power

Minimum billing demand that a large-power industrial rate customer (Rate L) agrees to pay and that Hydro-Québec must be ready to supply at any time in response to the customer’s demand.

Energy

Power used by electrical equipment over a given period of time. Expressed in kilowatthours (kWh), energy is calculated as power, expressed in kilowatts (kW), multiplied by the time during which the power is used, expressed in hours (h).

Power

Total amount of electricity supplied at a given time. Expressed in kilowatts (kW), power is the combined effect of voltage, expressed in kilovolts (kV), and current, expressed in amperes (A).

  • Low voltage: Voltage of 750 V or less.
  • Medium voltage: Voltage between 750 V and 44 kV.
  • High voltage: Voltage of 44 kV or more.

Voltage

Difference in electrical level between two points, expressed in volts (V).

Transformation

Operation that involves increasing or decreasing voltage through a transformer.

Winter period

The period from December 1 of one year through March 31 of the following year, inclusive.

Maximum power demand

Maximum power measured during a consumption period. It is the higher of the following two values: real power in kilowatts (kW), or a percentage (90% for small- and medium power rates, or 95% for large power rates) of the apparent power in kilovoltamperes (kVA).

Monthly period

Period of approximately 30 days, which can begin on any day of the month, established by Hydro-Québec for billing purposes.

Power factor

Power factor is calculated as follows:
PF = real power Apparent power x 100

Power demand

Power a customer requires to meet energy needs at a given time. The higher the customer’s energy consumption at a given time, the higher the power demand.