Frequently Asked Questions about October 2019 Rates

The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) has approved changes to the rates Enbridge Gas Inc. charges its customers effective Oct 1, 2019. Please visit myaccount business rates to view the rates specific to your area.

Are my rates changing in October?

Yes. On Oct. 1, Enbridge Gas changed the rates our customers pay. Rate changes include:

Rate M2

Rate 10

  • A decrease in the market price of natural gas, which includes transportation services
  • A small decease in delivery rates, and,
  • Price adjustments from prior periods.
  • Decreases in the gas commodity, transportation, storage and delivery rates, and,
  • Price adjustments from prior periods.

The new rates incorporate applicable temporary credits that don't affect the annual impacts listed on your rate notice included with your bill.

Enbridge Gas buys natural gas and gas transportation services for our customers from the market and we pass these costs to you without mark-up. Storage and delivery rates are reviewed and approved by the OEB, which conducts an open review process with participation from consumer groups and Ontario municipalities.

How long will these rates remain in effect?

These rates are in effect from Oct.1 through Dec. 31, 2019. Rates for natural gas used, transportation and storage services are adjusted once every three months (Jan. 1, April 1, July 1 and Oct. 1) to reflect ongoing changes in market prices.

Please visit myaccount business rates page to view the rates specific to your area.

What makes up the charges on my bill?

Gas costs - Gas commodity costs include information on the "Gas used" and "Gas price adjustment" lines on your bill. The net natural gas rate reflects what we expect to pay for gas supplies during the next year, as well as an adjustment to make up the difference between our forecast cost of gas and actual costs from prior periods. Also, in the Union South zone, the cost of transportation to Ontario is included in the "Gas used" charge and therefore there is no longer a separate Transportation to Union Gas line item on customer bills.

Transportation costs - Transportation costs include information on the "Transportation to Union Gas" and "Transportation price adjustment" lines on your bill. Natural gas is transported into Ontario from a variety of locations across North America using different pipelines for delivery across the province, so your transportation costs vary and depend on where you are located in the province. For customers in the Union South zone, the transportation cost is included in the "Gas used" line on your bill.

Delivery costs - Delivery costs include the information on the "Delivery" and "Delivery price adjustment" lines on your bill and reflect the cost of delivering natural gas to your business as well as an adjustment to make up the difference between our forecast and actual delivery rates from prior periods.

Storage costs - Storage costs include the information on the "Storage" and "Storage price adjustment" lines on your bill and reflect the cost of storing natural gas so it is available when you need it.

Monthly Charge - The fixed monthly charge partially covers the cost of maintaining a safe and reliable natural gas distribution system. It includes things like meter reading, customer services and 24-hour emergency response.

Federal Carbon Charge - The federal carbon charge is 3.9100 cents per m3. This charge will increase annually each April. All of the money collected for this charge goes to the federal government.

Why is Enbridge Gas changing the rates customers pay for natural gas?

Enbridge Gas buys natural gas supplies from the market and we pay other pipeline companies to transport the gas supply from where it is produced in Western Canada and the U.S. into our distribution system in Ontario. We adjust the rates we charge our customers for these items quarterly to reflect changes in market prices, which are passed through to our customers without mark-up. In addition, there are adjustments for the difference between our forecast for natural gas and natural gas transportation market prices, and the actual costs from prior periods.

What’s the impact of this rate change on business customers in the Union South zone (Rate M2)?

The combined impact of these changes for business customers in southern Ontario is a decrease of about $2,179 per year.

What’s the impact of this rate change on business customers in the Union North East and Union North West zones (Rate 10)?

The combined impact of these changes for business customers in the Union North East zone is a decrease of about $2962 a year, and a decrease in the Union North West zone of about $967 per year.

Why do customer rates differ by location?

Different areas of the province are served by different natural gas supply basins and transportation pipelines. We buy these services from the market and pass the cost through to our customers. Because the market costs for these services can vary by location, this can result in rate changes that differ by location.

How often does Enbridge Gas change its rates?

You'll see two general types of natural gas rate changes during the calendar year. The first type occurs quarterly, on the first of January, April, July and October, to reflect changes in what Enbridge Gas expects to pay for gas commodity and transportation services, as well as differences between forecast and actual costs for prior periods. This is shown as a change in the gas commodity and transportation rates on your bill and may also appear as a small change in delivery rates as Enbridge Gas also uses natural gas to power our delivery system. These changes, which are passed through to you without mark-up, help ensure that you're billed at a rate that closely reflects the expected market price of gas.

The second type of rate change occurs annually and reflects the overall costs to run a safe and reliable natural gas distribution system. On your bill, this may appear as a change in the delivery and storage rates or the monthly charge.

All rate changes are approved by the OEB.

What are price adjustments?

Price adjustments refund or collect the difference between our forecast costs and actual costs from prior periods. The price Enbridge Gas charges you for natural gas is based on a forecast of what the market price of gas will be during the next 12 months. This forecast is updated and approved by the OEB every three months to reflect changes in the market price of gas. Enbridge Gas does not earn a profit on the sale of gas, so we track the difference between the price we charge for gas based on this forecast and the actual cost for gas we purchase during the same period. When forecast costs differ from actual costs, Enbridge Gas applies a price adjustment to refund or collect the difference. This way, we can ensure that customers pay for the actual cost of gas, and not a penny more.

I noticed the same line twice on my bill. Am I being billed twice?

No, the billing period doesn't begin and end on the first and last days of each month but covers a period somewhere mid-month to mid-month. Consumption for the period prior to a rate change is billed at the old rate and consumption after a rate change is billed at the new rate. The number of days at each rate depends on the monthly cycle in which your account is billed.

How does this rate change impact customers who buy natural gas from an energy marketer?

If customers buy natural gas from an energy marketer, the price paid for gas supplies depends on the terms of the contract and is excluded from this rate change. For other services purchased from Enbridge Gas (natural gas transportation, storage and delivery) business customers will see overall changes in the cost of the services they purchase from Enbridge Gas ranging from a decrease of about $19 in the Union South zone, a decrease of about $337 in the Union North West zone, and a decrease of about $147 in the Union North East zone.

Are the rate changes a result of the merger between Union Gas and Enbridge Gas Distribution?

No. This rate change is part of an adjustment we make every three months following OEB approval, to reflect changes in the market price we expect to pay for natural gas supplies and transportation services. There are no changes to the rates customers pay from the merger of Union Gas and Enbridge Gas Distribution.

I heard that Union Gas and Enbridge Gas Distribution have amalgamated, and I notice that my bill now has the name Enbridge Gas Inc. What does that mean for me?

On Jan. 1, 2019, Union Gas and Enbridge Gas Distribution amalgamated into one utility, with the legal name Enbridge Gas Inc. For now, it is business as usual with no changes to the services you receive from your current utility. Please continue to interact with Union Gas as you have in the past; and our contact and emergency numbers have not changed.

There are changes to the utility bill payment process for former Union Gas customers. The recipient/payee name has changed to Enbridge (Union Gas), when paying bills online. Payments made by cheque should be payable to Enbridge Gas. Visit uniongas.com/payments for more information about the new bill payment process for former Union Gas customers.

Why is the monthly charge changing?

An additional dollar a month is being collected by natural gas distributors, including Enbridge Gas, as part of a new Ontario government program that is supporting nine natural gas expansion projects serving rural, remote and Indigenous communities across Ontario over the next two years. Increased access to the most affordable energy choice will stimulate Ontario's economy and create jobs. Additional funding for these expansion projects is being provided by customers served by these projects through a system expansion surcharge.

Do I need to make any change to who I pay?

If you pay online or through telephone banking, you will need to select "Enbridge (Union Gas)" as the payee and remove "Union Gas". You will need to re-enter your 14-digit account number when you do this so be sure to have your bill handy. The account number is on the top right-hand corner of the bill. Payments made by cheque should be payable to Enbridge Gas. Our address has not changed. Continue to remit your payments to the address on your bill.

I pay online though telephone banking and I didn’t update my payee name from Union Gas to Enbridge. Will my payment be applied to the right account?

A process is in place to ensure payments are directed to the correct payee if a payment is remitted using the former utility name. It is best to update your account number as soon as possible.

I am on automatic withdrawal. Do I need to make any changes to my payments?

There are no changes required for payments made by automatic withdrawal. You will see our new name, "Enbridge Gas Inc." associated with your payments.

What is the federal carbon charge on my bill?

The federal government has implemented a carbon pricing program in Ontario. The program includes two elements:

  • A carbon charge that is applied to fossil fuels, including natural gas, sold in Ontario. The federal carbon charge for natural gas customers in Ontario is 3.91 cents per cubic meter of natural gas. The total cost will depend on how much natural gas you use. This excludes industrial facilities that are registered in the output-based pricing system and hold an exemption certificate issued by the federal government,
  • An output-based pricing system that applies to facilities emitting 50,000 tonnes or more of carbon dioxide equivalent per year, with the potential for facilities emitting between 10,000 and 50,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per year to opt into the program as a voluntary participant.

As of August 1, 2019, Enbridge Gas bills, collects, and remits the federal carbon change from customers for the natural gas they use, to the federal government.

As a regulated utility, the rates associated with this program have been reviewed and approved by the Ontario Energy Board.

Visit the Government of Canada - Ontario and pollution pricing website for additional carbon pricing information.

Why is there a rate adjustment on my bill for the cap and trade program?

This small, temporary rate adjustment reflects the difference between the amount customers paid and the final actual costs related to the cap and trade program.

Is natural gas my best energy value?

Natural gas is clearly the best energy choice for Ontario businesses. It costs much less to heat your facility and water with gas compared to using electricity or fuel oil. There are many other benefits to using gas beyond price including efficiency, versatility, reliability and abundance of domestic supply that makes natural gas your best energy choice. Read more about the many benefits of natural gas.

What can customers do to keep their natural gas costs manageable?

While customers can't control the weather, they can take additional steps to reduce their monthly bills.

Conservation is one of the best long-term ways to reduce energy costs. We understand that to stay competitive you need to closely monitor your ongoing energy use, invest in energy efficiency, and take advantage of valuable rebates and incentives. Visit the Save Money & Energy section to learn more.