MONTRÉAL, July 30, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - Hydro-Québec Distribution has filed an application with the Régie de l'énergie requesting a 1.9% rate adjustment for all residential customers and most business customers, effective April 1, 2016.
Even with this increase, Hydro-Québec's residential rates would still be the lowest in North America.
The requested increase reflects an increase in supply costs as well as the costs resulting from the harsh temperatures of the past two winters. More specifically, it is based on the following elements:
- An increase in the cost of electricity purchases (+2.2 %), which includes:
- The cost of new supplies integrated into the grid pursuant to orders-in-council adopted by the Québec government
- The indexing of the heritage pool (which covers more than 90% of Quebecers' needs) in accordance with the Act respecting the Régie de l'énergie
- The impact of climate conditions, namely the extremely cold temperatures of the past two winters (+1.7 %).
However, these elements are offset by other factors (-2%) that have kept the requested increase to a minimum:
- An increase in revenue
- The company's productivity gains
- A decrease in the cost of service
If the Régie approves Hydro-Québec's application, the monthly impact of the 1.9% rate increase would come to the approximate amounts shown below, depending on the type of home.
Hydro-Québec Distribution plans to spend $135 million on energy efficiency programs and initiatives, in particular consumption management measures for handling the winter peak. This amount will help generate new energy savings of about 460 GWh, which will add to the 8.7-TWh savings achieved over the 2003–2015 period.
Support for low-income customers
Hydro-Québec will maintain its programs in support of low-income customers. It has earmarked $32 million for this purpose, mainly to help customers who have personalized arrangements to pay their electricity bills and arrears.
Hydro-Québec Distribution has also allocated close to $10 million to energy efficiency programs for low-income customers.
Tarif industriel de grande puissance
Under the Act respecting the Régie de l'énergie, indexing of the heritage pool does not apply to large-power industrial (Rate L) customers. Consequently, the increase for these customers would be 1.2%.
Consultative review process
Every year, Hydro-Québec's rate application is analyzed by the Régie de l'énergie according to a rigorous process that includes public hearings in December, during which representatives from all stakeholders can express their views. Upon completion of this process, the Régie issues a ruling early in the following year, so that the new rates can take effect on April 1. By law, it is the Régie de l'énergie that sets electricity rates in Québec.
Hydro-Québec Distribution's rate application (in French) is available on the Régie de l'énergie's Web site: www.regie-energie.qc.ca.
Image with caption: "Impact on homes heated with electricity (CNW Group/Hydro-Québec)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150730_C6792_PHOTO_EN_465180.jpg
For further information: Nathalie Vachon / Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Public affairs and media, Hydro-Québec, 514 289-5005