SURREY, BC, June 16 /CNW/ - Terasen Gas has received approval from the
British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) for natural gas and propane
commodity rates, effective July 1, 2009. With BCUC approval, propane rates
will increase in Revelstoke, while natural gas rates for customers in most
regions will remain unchanged.
"The natural gas commodity market has been relatively steady recently,
which allows us to maintain rates for the majority of our customers," said
Cynthia Des Brisay, Vice President, Gas Supply and Transmission, Terasen Gas.
"We are pleased that we can provide stable rates but encourage our customers
to use energy wisely all year round."
The approval means rates for customers in the Lower Mainland, Fraser
Valley, Interior, North, the Kootenays and Fort Nelson will not change. Rates
on Vancouver Island, Sunshine Coast and Powell River will also be unaffected.
In Revelstoke, customers will see a propane rate increase of $2.61 per
gigajoule (GJ). This works out to an approximate 17 per cent increase, or $130
on a total annual bill based on annual consumption of 50 GJ/year. Customers in
Revelstoke have benefited from an almost 50 per cent decrease in rates since
January 1, 2009. As propane rates are influenced by the cost of crude oil, and
closely follow oil prices, a rise in that commodity market in the past quarter
impacts rates for propane customers.
In Whistler, where customers are currently being converted from propane
to natural gas, the BCUC 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 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
Terasen Gas uses a number of tactics and strategies to ensure a reliable
supply of natural gas and propane at a reasonable price for our customers,
- purchasing gas from a variety of sources
- locking in the price of gas through the use of futures contracts
- purchasing a portion of the supply from the spot markets
The cost of the natural gas or propane commodity accounts for the
majority of the typical residential bill. The delivery charges, which account
for the remaining portion, 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 has filed a revenue requirement
application with the BCUC that, if approved, would be used to set delivery
rates that come into effect January 1, 2010 for these customers.
In June, 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 for customers on Vancouver
Island, the Sunshine Coast, and in Powell River.
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 approaching $12 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, Email: