Approval brings common rates for majority of natural gas customers
SURREY, B.C., May 28, 2014 /CNW/ - FortisBC has now received the consent
of the Lieutenant Governor in Council to amalgamate its natural gas
utilities. This follows regulatory approval from the BC Utilities
Commission (BCUC) in late February.
"With this consent, we now have the necessary government approval
required to amalgamate our natural gas utilities, allowing us to
eliminate rate discrepancies that previously existed and provide
consistent programs and services to our customers," said John Walker,
President and CEO of FortisBC.
Common rates will be phased in over a three-year period starting in
2015. Under a common rate structure, each customer will be charged the
same rate regardless of where they live. Customers on Vancouver Island
are expected to see a decrease of approximately 25 per cent
transitioned over three years, while customers in the Lower Mainland
and the Interior are expected to see an increase of approximately five
per cent phased-in over three years as a result of amalgamation.
All customers will also have access to the same programs and services
across our service territory. These include energy efficiency programs
and renewable natural gas. The cost of large projects, such as upgrades to natural gas
infrastructure and service expansions, will also now be shared among a
wider customer base, lessening the cost to each customer over the
With this approval, FortisBC plans to amalgamate its regulated natural
gas utilities FortisBC Energy Inc., FortisBC Energy (Vancouver Island) Inc., FortisBC
Energy (Whistler) Inc. and Terasen Gas Holdings Inc. into one legal entity under the name FortisBC Energy Inc.
For further background on common natural gas rates in B.C. visit fortisbc.com/commonrates. Customers are encouraged to check this website in the coming months as
more information regarding timing and proposed rates becomes available.
FortisBC will be filing rate applications with the BCUC in the coming
FortisBC is a regulated utility focused on providing safe and reliable
energy, including natural gas, electricity and propane. FortisBC
employs more than 2,200 British Columbians and serves approximately 1.1
million customers in 135 B.C. communities. FortisBC is indirectly
wholly owned by Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution
utility in Canada. FortisBC owns and operates two liquefied natural gas
storage facilities and four regulated hydroelectric generating plants,
approximately 7,150 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.
For further information:
Manager, Corporate Communications