Yes, rates are decreasing for all customers. The details include:
- Decreases in the market price of natural gas and transportation services,
- Small changes in delivery and storage rates, and
- Price adjustments from prior periods.
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 and transportation services during the next year as well as any adjustments to make up the difference between our forecast cost for 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.
For customers in the Union South zone, the net decrease for gas supplies is about $66 a year. In the Union North West zone, there is a net annual decrease of about $23 for gas supplies, and there is a net annual decrease of about $71 in the Union North East zone.
Transportation costs - Transportation costs include all information on the "Transportation to Union Gas" and "Transportation price adjustment" lines on your bill and reflect the cost of transporting natural gas to Ontario from its North American sources.
Transportation costs vary depending on where you live due to changing fuel prices, pipeline tolls and available capacity on pipelines serving different parts of Ontario.
For customers in the Union South zone, the transportation cost is included in the "Gas used" line on your bill. In the North West zone, the net transportation cost decreased by about $7 annually. In the North East zone, the net transportation cost decreased by about $1.00 annually.
Delivery costs - Delivery costs include information on the "Delivery" and "Delivery price adjustment" lines on your bill and reflect the cost of delivering natural gas to your home or business through our safe and reliable distribution system.
For all residential customers in Ontario, there's a small decrease between about $0.65 and $1.09 cents a year in delivery costs; depending where you live, to safely and reliably deliver natural gas to your home or business.
Storage costs - Storage costs include information on the "Storage" and "Storage price adjustment" lines on your bill and reflect the cost of storing natural gas.
Storage cost decreases in the Union North West and Union North East zones are about $1.65 a year. There is no change for customers in the Union South zone.
Federal Carbon Charge - The federal carbon charge is 3.9100 cents per cubic meter of natural gas. This charge will increase annually each April. All of the money collected for this charge goes to the federal government.
Enbridge Gas buys natural gas supplies from the market and we pay other pipelines 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 on 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, storage and distribution costs and the actual costs from prior periods.
These customer rates will remain in effect from Oct.1 through Dec. 31, 2019.
Different areas of the province are served by a different mix of natural gas transportation pipelines and gas supply sources, and as such, the cost to purchase gas supplies and the services to transport the supplies into our distribution system in Ontario from the market for our customers, varies by location.
No, this rate change is part of an adjustment we make every three months, following Ontario Energy Board (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.
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 change 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 payment process for former Union Gas customers. The recipient/payee name has changed to Enbridge Gas (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 Union Gas customers.
All customers will see "Enbridge Gas Inc."" associated with their payments.
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.
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.
There are no changes required for payments made by automatic withdrawal. You will see our new name "Enbridge Gas Inc." associated with your payments.
Equal billing payments are set each year in September based on a forecast of the amount of natural gas you would use in a year, and where natural gas prices are expected to be during the year. Periodically throughout the year, we review your equal billing account to determine if the payment is set at the right level. If it is not, we adjust it up or down based on the more current information, which includes your actual gas use and all rate changes. A final true up between what was paid, and the actual cost occurs each August.
If you buy natural gas and/or transportation services from an energy marketer, the price you pay for your 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), residential customers will see overall decreases of between $0.65 and $8.60 a year depending on location.
An additional dollar a month is being collected by natural gas distributors, including Enbridge Gas, as part of a new Ontario government program which is supporting nine natural gas expansion projects serving rural, remote, and Indigenous communities 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.
The rates we charge customers for natural gas and gas transportation services are based on a forecast of the prices we expect to pay to buy these items from the market. The actual market costs can differ from our forecasts and adjustments are made quarterly (Jan. 1, April 1, July 1 and Oct. 1) to either refund or collect the difference so that you only pay the actual costs for these services and nothing more. These costs are passed on to customers without any mark-up.
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. Natural gas consumption for the period prior to a rate change is billed at the old rate and gas consumption after a rate change is billed at the new rate. The number of days at each rate depends on the monthly billing cycle of your account.
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 charge for natural gas customers in Ontario is 3.91 cents per cubic meter of natural gas used. For the average Ontario household, it will add about $86* to your annual natural gas bill. The total cost will depend on how much natural gas you use.
* excludes industrial facilities that are registered in the out-put 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 Aug.,1, 2019, Enbridge Gas bills, collects and remits the federal carbon charge from their customers for the natural gas they use, to the federal government.
As a regulated utility, the rates associated with this program have been reviewed any approved by the Ontario Energy Board.
Visit the Government of Canada - Ontario and pollution pricing website for additional federal government carbon pricing information.
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.
As colder weather approaches, customers can take additional steps to reduce their monthly bills.
Use energy efficiently. Reducing your natural gas use can help keep your bills lower. For example, reducing your hot water use by only running the dishwasher when it's full, doing laundry with cold water and taking shorter showers can help keep bills lower. Energy efficiency can also help you lower emissions and emission related costs.
Enbridge Gas provides a wide range of tools and education to give consumers and businesses the power to take control and manage their energy use and save money. For more information visit uniongas.com/savemoney.