Energy Planning Tool (EPT)
Frequently Asked Questions


What is the Energy Planning Tool (EPT)?
The EPT is a web-based application that allows Ontario municipalities to manage energy activities and projects, generate reports, track organizational effectiveness and manage energy consuming assets. It was purpose-built to allow you to comply with Regulation 397/11 and to do much more.

What benefit is the EPT to me?
The EPT was designed to help municipalities and broader public sector (BPS) entities ensure compliance with the reporting requirements contained in regulations coming out of the Green Energy Act. Beyond compliance, the EPT can help your municipality manage costs in developing an energy plan as users can develop their own plan by utilizing the planning chevron.

When are the report and plan due?
The Ministry of Energy requires you to submit the energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions report before 1 July each year and an energy conservation plan that must be posted before 1 July 2014 and renewed every five (5) years thereafter.

What staff and technical capacity is required to use the EPT?
For any staff familiar with common desktop software applications, the EPT should not be overwhelming. Developing a plan, however, does require a sizeable amount of staff time and we recommend each municipality form an energy team with representation from Council, Finance and Senior Administration, Facility Management, Parks and Recreation, as well as energy/environmental staff where they exist.

How much does the EPT cost and how will LAS invoice me?
LAS will invoice all enrolled municipalities and other Broader Public Sector Agencies $250 (+HST) per year to subscribe to the EPT and we will bill you at the beginning of each calendar year. This fee covers the cost of software hosting and support services.

How do I end my subscription?
Simply inform LAS staff and we will close your municipality’s account. There is no minimum time commitment for the EPT but we will not issue any refunds during the program year.

Who hosts and maintains the system?
LAS both hosts and maintains the system and we own the rights to the EPT. There is no local IT requirement for users as the EPT is a web-based system.

Is there a user guide or training provided for the EPT?
A user guide and other self-training materials will be provided upon enrolment. Users can always download the latest version of the EPT Manual from the LAS website. LAS also offers a staffed Helpdesk for ongoing user support.

Are there any security risks related to using EPT as it’s an online software tool?
No.

How do you define a user?
Users are people who will require access to the EPT tool. LAS needs to know who these people are in order to create their logins in the EPT system. If some of the people on your team will never need access to the tool, we can just simply create them in the People area without assigning EPT logins.  

How do I add additional users?
While users cannot add additional users on their own due to certain security measures, LAS can quickly add additional users if you provide us with names, titles and emails. An individual municipality can have as many users as desired at no additional cost.

Can I have a say in improvements to the system?
Yes, simply email any suggestions to LAS and we will consider during one of our semi-annual update processes.

How do I populate the chart on the homepage?
The Municipality Yearly Energy Budget Summary refers to 2012 projections (all columns up to YTD usage and YTD Costs) data as entered in the Energy Type Table in the Facilities Page. So if a fuel type or estimate is not entered there it will not show up on the table or chart on the home page. The Energy Consumption section of the Facilities Page populates the YTD usage and YTD Costs columns.

Why can’t I save my documents to the library?
The EPT does not accept special characters, such as quotation marks, which are used in document names. Remove all such characters from the file name and save as usual.

How do I enter water consumed in my facilities?
The EPT does not provide for this as Regulation 397/11 only requires municipalities to report on water and wastewater treated in those specific facilities.  The regulation requires reporting on electricity and fossil fuel usage.

Does the EPT prorate my bills that I enter monthly?
Some users choose to enter monthly energy consumption while others enter one number per calendar year. For those that enter monthly, the EPT does not pro-rate bills that cover periods both in and outside of the reporting year. Rather it counts the bill that starts before the reporting year and does not count the one that ends after the reporting year. Here is an example:

For 2011:
  • 15 Dec 2010 – 15 Jan 2011 will be counted
  • 15 Jan 2011 – 15 Feb 2011 will be counted
  • … … … all these bills will be counted
  • 15 Nov 2011 – 15 Dec 2011 will be counted
  • 15 Dec 2011 – 15 Jan 2012 will NOT be counted
The last bill will be counted in the 2012 reporting year.

Alternatively, you may do your calculations to pro-rate on your own and enter consumption information in one line: 1 Jan 2011 – 31 Dec 2011.
 

Contact

Jeff Barten
Energy and Asset Services Manager

T 519.998.2557
TF 1.877.426.6527
F 416.971.6191