If you have seen an increase in your heating bill over the last few months, you aren’t alone. Customers across Alberta are feeling the burn of rising resource costs, and gas bills for usage during December and January are confirming it. So what’s the Deal?
#1 Cold snaps
When temperatures dip, as they have off and on recently, usage increases across the board as furnaces compensate for frigid temperatures with more gas usage. Across Canada, users have seen an increase in the base price of natural gas. Increased cost per GJ combined with increased demand during cold days is reflected on your bill.
#2 Increased pass through fees
Private utility providers, like Burst, use gas lines owned by ATCO Gas to transport natural gas into your home where it can be used and recorded by your meter. When Atco increases the fee it charges for using their lines, that increase is reflected on your bill. In other words, it is ‘passed through’ to you.
Alberta’s Utility Commission allows ATCO to use a two-tiered costing program to determine its line fees. They charge a base distribution fee for using the line, and an additional fee for the volume of product (natural gas) that is running through it.
#3 Natural Disasters
Natural disasters, accidents, anything that damages infrastructure can prompt a line provider to increase their rates as above. Recently, the reconstruction following fires in Fort McMurray has required additional manpower and, of course, money to fix. While your region may not have been directly impacted by the fire, all of Atco’s line customers have seen an increase in fees as a result of these unforeseen rebuild costs.
Overall, Alberta has seen a trifecta of circumstantial increases that have been outside of our scope of influence as providers (i.e. base rate for natural gas, increased variable line fees and added consumer demand).
Burst Energy remains committed to providing the best possible rates for its users across Alberta. Our administrative fee remains a fixed monthly rate of $4.50 CAN – that’s our commitment to you.
For more information on Burst Energy’s Natural Gas offering, visit us at: burstenergy.ca/floating-natural-gas-rate/