SURREY, BC, June 9 /CNW/ - Terasen Gas has applied to the British
Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) for adjustments to natural gas and
propane commodity rates, effective July 1, 2009. If approved, rates in
Whistler will decrease, while natural gas rates for customers in most regions
will remain the same. An application to increase propane rates in Revelstoke
has also been filed.
"The North American commodity market for natural gas has remained
relatively stable, allowing us to apply to maintain rates for most of our
customers," said Cynthia Des Brisay, Vice President, Gas Supply and
Transmission, Terasen Gas. "Propane prices are impacted by different market
factors but principally are driven by the cost of crude oil which has been
rising on North American markets."
Natural gas commodity rates for customers in the Lower Mainland, Fraser
Valley, Interior, North, the Kootenays and Fort Nelson would remain unchanged,
if the application is approved by the BCUC. Vancouver Island, Sunshine Coast,
and Powell River rates would also be unaffected.
In Whistler, where customers are currently being converted from propane
to natural gas, the BCUC has recently approved a 12 per cent rate decrease to
annual charges. These changes came into effect June 1, 2009. Terasen Gas has
now applied for a decrease to Whistler commodity rates effective July 1, 2009.
If approved, customers in Whistler will see a rate decrease of $2.41 per
gigajoule (GJ). This equals approximately 10 per cent, or $217, on a total
annual bill, based on an average annual consumption of 90 GJ. Due to ongoing
conversions, some customers will not receive their first natural gas bill
until August. More information about the Whistler Natural Gas Conversion
Project is available at terasengas.com/whistler.
Customers in Revelstoke, who have benefited from a 28 per cent and 22 per
cent decrease since January 1, 2009, will see a propane rate increase of $2.61
per gigajoule, if approved. This works out to an approximate 17 per cent
increase, or $130 on a total annual bill, based on an average annual
consumption of 50 GJ of energy per year. The increase is attributable to a
moderate rise in oil prices in the last quarter.
Every three months, Terasen Gas reviews natural gas and propane commodity
prices with the BCUC in order to ensure the flow-through rates customers are
charged are sufficient to cover the cost of purchasing gas or propane. The
cost of the natural gas or propane commodity accounts for the majority of the
typical residential bill.
Delivery charges account for the remaining portion of a residential bill
and have remained relatively flat over the past six years for customers in the
Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, Interior, North, the Kootenays and Revelstoke.
Terasen Gas Inc. will be filing a revenue requirement application with the
BCUC by mid-June that, if approved, would be used to set delivery rates that
come into effect January 1, 2010 for these customers.
In the coming weeks, Terasen Gas (Vancouver Island) Inc. will also file a
revenue requirement application in addition to a rate design application that,
if approved, would come into effect January 1, 2010 and could potentially
impact rates for customers on Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast, and in
Terasen Gas is mainly composed of the operations of Terasen Gas Inc. and
Terasen Gas (Vancouver Island) Inc., both indirect wholly owned subsidiaries
of Fortis Inc. Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in
Canada, serves more than two million gas and electric customers and has total
assets exceeding $11 billion. Its regulated holdings include Terasen Gas and
electric utilities in five Canadian provinces and three Caribbean countries.
Fortis Inc. owns non-regulated hydroelectric generation assets across Canada
and in Belize and upper New York State. It also owns hotels and commercial
real estate in Canada. 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
For further information:
For further information: Media contact: Michael Chisholm, Corporate
Communications Manager, Phone: (604) 576-7300, E-mail: