Letter: FortisBC spokesman says label change a clarification

“Storage and Transport” is not a new charge, nor does it mean you are paying more than you did before.

To the editor:

A letter published in the Kelowna Capital News March 20 [FortisBC Billing Manipulative] raised questions about the charges that appear on customers’ FortisBC gas bills. We would like to take this opportunity to further explain recent terminology changes to customers’ bills.

The basic charge and charges for gas used will stay the same on customers’ bills. As of January 1, 2015, FortisBC changed what used to be called “Midstream Charge” to “Storage and Transport.” This new wording better reflects what customers are actually paying for, which covers the costs associated with storing and transporting the natural gas to and from our delivery system. This is not a new charge, nor does it mean you are paying more than you did before.

Your Commodity Charges include the Storage and Transport Charge and the Cost of Gas Charge and varies directly with consumption and includes the cost of gas, administrative and gas management costs. We adjust these charges four times per year, and on April 1, commodity rates will decrease to the lowest they’ve been in a decade.

Delivery items on your bill include your Delivery Charge, which varies with consumption and includes the costs to deliver the gas to your home and the Basic Charge, which ensures you have access to gas when you need it—24 hours a day. The Basic Charge does not vary with consumption and covers some of the fixed costs of delivering gas to your home, including monitoring and maintaining the pipeline system to ensure its safety and integrity.

For more information on bills and rates, visit fortisbc.com/rates. If you are concerned about your bill or are looking for ways to save energy, call us at 1-888-224-2710.

Mark Warren, P. Eng.,

director, customer service, technology and systems,

FortisBC