Yes, rates are changing for all customers. Details for the most recent rate change include:
- An increase to the federal carbon charge. This charge increases annually each April and the money collected for this charge goes to the federal government.
- An increase in the price we expect to pay to buy natural gas supplies in the coming year.
- Changes in the price we expect to pay for transportation services from the market in the coming year.
- Price/cost adjustments for the difference between our forecast costs and the actual costs from prior periods.
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. Delivery rates (and storage rates in the Union rate zones) are reviewed and approved by the OEB, which conducts an open review process with participation from consumer groups and Ontario municipalities.
Gas costs - Gas commodity costs include information on the “Gas Supply Charge” and “Gas Price Adjustment” or “Gas Cost Adjustment” lines on your bill, depending on your location. 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 rate zone, the cost of transportation to Ontario is included in the “Gas Supply Charge” and therefore there is no longer a separate “Transportation to Enbridge” line item on customer bills.
Transportation costs - Transportation costs include all information on the “Transportation to Enbridge” and “Transportation Price Adjustment” lines on your bill, depending on your location, and reflect the cost of transporting natural gas into 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.
Delivery costs - Delivery costs include information on the “Delivery to You” and/or “Delivery Price Adjustment” lines on your bill, depending on your location, and reflect the cost of delivering natural gas to your home or business through our safe and reliable distribution system. This charge also includes a facility carbon charge associated with the operation of Enbridge Gas’ facilities to deliver natural gas to you.
Storage costs (for Union rate zone customers) – Storage costs include information on the “Storage Charge” and “Storage Price Adjustment” lines on your bill and reflect the cost of storing natural gas.
Customer Charge – The customer 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 7.83 cents per cubic meter of natural gas. This charge increases annually each April. All of the money collected for this charge goes to the federal government. Visit uniongas.com/carboncharge for more information.
Charges from Other Companies - Enbridge Gas provides a billing service to other companies that offer energy-related products and services. These companies are not owned by or affiliated with Enbridge Gas. If you decide to buy a product or service from a participating company, the charges will appear on the section of your bill called Charges From Other Companies. Enbridge Gas does not recommend, endorse or guarantee the products or services offered by such companies.
As part of the federal government's carbon pollution pricing program, a carbon charge applies to fossil fuels sold in Ontario, including natural gas. The current federal carbon charge for the natural gas you use is 7.83 cents per cubic metre (m3), increasing annually each April. For the average Ontario household, the federal carbon charge accounts for approximately $172-$188 of your annual natural gas bill, depending on your location.
All of the money that we collect for the federal carbon charge goes to the federal government. Learn more about the federal carbon pollution pricing program from the Government of Canada.
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.
Different areas of the province are served by a different mix of natural gas transportation pipelines and gas supply sources, and as such, the costs for Enbridge Gas to buy gas supplies and transportation services from the market, vary by location. In addition, the costs to build and maintain a distribution pipeline system varies by the geographic location for several reasons including different soil conditions (e.g. rockier soil in the north), population density and the distance between homes/businesses and the need for and timing of infrastructure expansions and maintenance. These costs differences are reflected in the four geographically based rate zones.
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, storage or the customer charge, depending on your location.
All rate changes are approved by the OEB.
Equal monthly payment plan payments are set each year 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 annually in the last month of your plan.
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. If you have questions about their charges, please contact them directly at the number found on your bill. For other services purchased from Enbridge Gas (natural gas transportation, storage and delivery), residential customer rate changes depend on your location.
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.
The temporary rate/temporary price adjustment reflects the difference between the amount customers paid for energy conservation programs and the actual costs incurred.
- EGD rate zone: This adjustment will appear on customers' April to June bills in three equal installments, and for a typical residential customer the total charge will be about $11.
- Union rate zones: For residential and small business customers (Rate 01, Rate 10, Rate M1 and Rate M2), this adjustment will appear on customers' April to September bills. For a typical residential customer the amount ranges from a refund of about $9 (Union North West and Union North East) to a charge of about $26 (Union South). For all other customers this adjustment will appear on customers’ April to June bills.
No, the billing period doesn’t begin and end on the first and last days of each month but covers a period of approximately one month beginning and ending at approximately the same time in the 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.
Natural gas is the best value for your energy dollar at about half the cost of electricity, oil or propane. In addition, an abundant North American supply of natural gas is expected to keep prices comparatively low for years to come. Enbridge Gas is committed to helping homes and businesses manage their gas 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 offers a range of energy-conservation information and programs that can help customers lower natural gas use and save money. For example, through the Home Efficiency Rebate Program, consumers could be eligible for up to $5,000 in renovation rebates. For more programs visit: enbridgesmartsavings.com.
If customers have concerns about paying their bill, support is available:
- Enhanced payment plans.
If more time is needed to pay a balance, customers can arrange to make installment payments against a balance and avoid late payment fees and disconnection.
- Equal Monthly Payment Plan (EMPP).
Customers can spread their yearly natural gas costs into monthly payments to avoid fluctuating bills with the seasons, making it easier on their budget.
- Low Income Energy Assistance Plan (LEAP).
Low-income customers having trouble paying their bill may qualify for emergency relief through LEAP. The program provides emergency relief with a one-time financial grant of up to $500 for eligible low-income customers. Customers can visit the United Way Simcoe Muskoka website for qualification information.
- Government Assistance.
The Ontario Energy Board has launched the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) to help customers pay down energy bill debt incurred since COVID 19 began.