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Eleven prominent members of Ontario's electricity sector have agreed to serve on Ontario's Smart Grid Forum. The forum aims to develop a vision for a provincial smart grid that will provide consumers with more efficient, responsive and cost-effective electricity service.

The goal of a smart grid is to use advanced information-based technologies to increase grid efficiency, reliability and flexibility. It enables the better use of the existing delivery infrastructure and offers benefits for both the consumer and the environment, according to the Independent Electricity System Operator.

The Ontario Smart Grid Forum will focus on opportunities in Ontario, but will monitor developments occurring in other jurisdictions and identify potential linkages.

Forum objectives include:

- educating involved industry leaders about emerging drivers, technologies and opportunities related to the smart grid,

- describing and quantifying the benefits that will be possible through a wide range of smart grid technologies,

- identifying enablers and barriers to the construction of the smart grid, and

- identifying the actions needed to overcome barriers so that the benefits of the smart grid may be realized by the people of Ontario.

Members will meet on a monthly basis until the end of the year, after which a comprehensive report will be issued with findings and recommendations for Ontario's electricity sector. This report will form the basis for further action and discussion among policy-makers, regulators and industry participants.

SOURCE: Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator

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