Majority of FortisBC customers to enjoy even lower natural gas commodity rates

Rates maintained in Revelstoke, Whistler and Vancouver Island


SURREY, BC, Sept. 13, 2011 /CNW/ - FortisBC has now received approval from the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) to decrease the natural gas commodity rates it charges customers in the Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, Interior, North, the Kootenays, and Fort Nelson. The decreases will take effect October 1, 2011. Commodity rates will be maintained in Revelstoke, Whistler and Vancouver Island.

"The North American natural gas markets have continued to weaken over the last quarter due to decreased demand and increased supply, which have dampened expectations for natural gas prices. As a result, we are able to offer the majority of our customers some of the lowest rates in years," said Cynthia Des Brisay, vice president, energy supply and resource development, FortisBC. "B.C. also contributes to this abundance of North American gas supply. Not only does this natural gas play an important role in the province's economy, but it will help meet the future energy needs of British Columbians. In fact, about 22 per cent of the total energy consumed in B.C. is from natural gas."

Factors affecting the market price of natural gas include weather, supply and demand, and economic conditions. FortisBC buys natural gas on behalf of customers at the best possible price and passes that price on without mark-up.

Residential customers in the Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, Interior, North and the Kootenays will see a commodity rate decrease of $0.56 per gigajoule, or approximately $53 on their total annual bill depending on consumption. Commodity rates for customers participating in the Customer Choice program will not be affected, as they purchase the gas commodity from a licensed gas marketer.

Residential customers in Fort Nelson will see a commodity rate decrease of $0.62 per gigajoule, or approximately $87 on their total annual bill, depending on consumption.

Every three months, FortisBC reviews natural gas commodity rates with the BCUC in order to ensure rates passed on to customers cover the cost of purchasing the gas on their behalf. FortisBC does not earn a profit on the price of the natural gas commodity. The company's earnings come from natural gas delivery charges - what the company charges to deliver natural gas to customers. Natural gas delivery rates and midstream rates are also reviewed by the BCUC.

For more information on natural gas rates by region, how commodity rates are set, and to learn more about FortisBC, visit www.fortisbc.com/rates.

FortisBC is an integrated energy solutions provider focused on providing safe and reliable energy, including natural gas, electricity, propane and alternative energy solutions, at the lowest reasonable cost. FortisBC employs more than 2,000 British Columbians and serves approximately 1.1 million customers in more than 135 B.C. communities. FortisBC is indirectly wholly owned by Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. FortisBC owns and operates four regulated hydroelectric generating plants, approximately 7,000 kilometres of transmission and distribution power lines and approximately 46,000 kilometres of natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines. FortisBC Inc., FortisBC Energy Inc., FortisBC Energy (Vancouver Island) Inc., and FortisBC Energy (Whistler) Inc. do business as FortisBC. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional information can be accessed at www.fortisinc.com or www.sedar.com.

 

SOURCE FortisBC Inc.

For further information:

MEDIA CONTACT:
Marcus Wong
Corporate Communications Manager
Phone: 778-571-3263
Email: marcus.wong@fortisbc.com
fortisbc.com
twitter.com/fortisBC
youtube.com/fortisBC

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FortisBC Inc.

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