OEB Approves rate changes for Union Gas Limited

TORONTO, Dec. 18 /CNW/ - Today the Ontario Energy Board approved changes to natural gas commodity and delivery rates charged by Union Gas Limited (Union) effective January 1, 2010. The new rates reflect two Board decisions that affect Union's 2010 rates. These decisions are the Board's November 9, 2009 decision approving delivery rates and other charges, and the quarterly rate adjustment for the natural gas commodity.

The adjustment reflects a decrease in Union's forecast average price of natural gas over the next 12 months in Union's North, Northwestern, Eastern and Southern rate zones and an increase in Union's forecast average price of natural gas in the Fort Frances rate zone. The adjustment also reflects an increase in natural gas transportation charges to Union's territory from Western Canada which are determined by the National Energy Board and passed on to consumers. Natural gas utilities forecast the price of natural gas quarterly to determine what they expect to pay for the natural gas they supply to their customers over a 12-month period.

Consumers' bills will change depending on the amount of natural gas used, and type of consumer. The changes will result in an approximate annual increase between $4 and $50 for residential consumers using 2,600 cubic meters (m(3)) a year who purchase their natural gas directly from Union (system gas customers).

The natural gas commodity price consumers will pay for the period January 1st to March 31st, 2010 are as follows:

    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  Natural Gas Price   Gas Price              Effective
    Rate Zone     cents/m(3)          Adjustment cents/m(3)  Price cents/m(3)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Eastern       19.8379             -11.5225               8.3154
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Northwestern  19.5533             -11.5225               8.0308
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Northern      19.7047             -11.5225               8.1822
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Fort Frances  19.4440             -11.5225               7.9215
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Southern      19.8379             -8.6440                11.1939
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

The effective rate consumers will pay between January 1st and March 31st is a combination of the forecasted natural gas commodity price and the gas price adjustment.

The Board will continue to review the natural gas commodity rates every 3 months and adjust rates if necessary.

Consumers who have a contract with a natural gas marketer will see an approximate annual increase between $2 and $51.

The Ontario Energy Board regulates the province's electricity and natural gas sectors in the public interest. It envisions a viable and efficient energy sector with informed consumers and works toward this vision through regulation that is effective, fair and transparent. For more information on the Board, please visit our web site at www.oeb.gov.on.ca or contact the Consumer Relations Centre at 416-314-2455 or toll-free at 1-877-632-2727.

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SOURCE Ontario Energy Board

For further information: For further information: Media Inquiries, Paul Crawford, Ontario Energy Board, (416) 544-5171; Public Inquiries, (416) 314-2455 Or 1-877-632-2727


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