11/03/2015 08:09 EST | Updated 11/03/2016 05:12 EDT

Ontario Electricity Rates Climbing Steadily

Electricity rates for many Ontario consumers went up yet again on Sunday, bumping the cost of a kilowatt hour this winter by between 0.3 and 1.4 cents, depending on the time of day.

The rate hike applies to most households and small businesses, and is the latest in a series of increases that have made the cost of hydro a contentious issue for many Ontarians.

Data from the provincial regulator show a steady increase in hydro rates since 2008, when they dipped slightly. 

The cost of electricity during on-peak hours has jumped 77 per cent since Smart Meters became common five years ago. In November 2010, the price was 9.9 cents/kWh. 

Ontario Hydro charges on-peak rates in the morning and early evening in the winter, and during the afternoon in the summer. Off-peak rates apply year-round from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., and all day on weekends and holidays.