New Large General Service and Medium General Service rates
The Large General Service (LGS) and Medium General Service (MGS) rates are changing. Starting on April 1, 2017, these rates will be changed from baseline rates to simpler flat rates.
Under the new rates, there's no tiered pricing for electricity and demand charges, and baselines aren't required. You'll pay the same price for all your energy used (measured in kWh) and the same price for all of your demand (measured in kW).
Why your rates are changing
We began meeting with customers and stakeholders about our rates in May 2014 as part of our 2015 Rate Design Application.
During the two and half year rate design process, we reviewed the Electric Tariff Terms and Conditions and our rate schedules. We received feedback from customers and stakeholders that the current baseline rates were too complex for LGS and MGS customers to manage their electricity costs. Our analysis also showed the rates did not achieve energy conservation as expected.
As a result, we applied to the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) in September 2015 to replace the existing baseline rates with simpler flat rates. Following a comprehensive review, the BCUC issued its decision on the application on January 20, 2017. This decision included approval of our proposal to change to the simpler flat rates.
Current baseline rates
The current LGS and MGS rates include separate charges for energy and demand. There is also a basic charge that recovers a portion of the fixed costs to administer your account.
Energy charges are baseline rates under which you pay for your total energy usage in two parts.
- In Part 1, you pay for your baseline amount of energy, which is your account's average historical electricity use during the month.
- In Part 2, you receive a credit if you use less electricity than your baseline, or a charge if you use more electricity than your baseline.
The demand charge depends on your peak usage and has three inclining tiered rates.
There is no charge for the first 35 kW of demand, a lower price for demand between 35 kW and 150 kW and another higher price for demand over 150 kW.
New flat rates
Starting on April 1, 2017, both the LGS and MGS rates will move to a simpler flat rate structure. You'll pay the same price for all your energy used (measured in kWh) and the same price for all of your demand (measured in kW).
|Large General Service Rate
(Rate Schedules 1600, 1601, 1610 or 1611)
|Medium General Service Rate
(Rate Schedules 1500, 1501, 1510 or 1511)
||$0.2429 per day
||$0.2429 per day
||$11.21 per kW
||$4.92 per kW
||$0.0550 per kWh
||$0.0880 per kWh
Key changes to the rates
- Baselines have been eliminated. You will be billed on actual electricity use only. Your electricity usage will no longer be compared to historical consumption – no more Part 2 credits or charges.
- You will be billed at the same flat rate for electricity used (measured in kWh) – not on tiered rates.
- You will be billed at the same flat rate for your peak demand (measured in kW) – not on tiered rate.
- Rate structures are intended to be revenue neutral – we expect to collect the same total amount of revenue overall from the new flat rate structure as we would have from the old baseline rate structure.
- Energy charges are slightly lower and demand charges are slightly higher when compared to the baseline rate structure. The slight increase to the demand charge is to better reflect our costs to service customers with high demand. The corresponding decrease in the energy charge offsets this higher demand charge.
The simpler rate structure will make it easier to plan and budget for electricity costs and determine the benefits of energy efficiency projects.
Changes for Control Group customers
Some accounts were randomly selected to remain on the old LGS rate (Rate Schedules 1200, 1201, 1210 or 1211) when the baseline rates were introduced in January 2011 to provide a comparison to the energy conservation effectiveness of the baseline rates.
Since the baseline rates are ending, we'll be discontinuing the control group. All control group accounts will be moved to either the new LGS or MGS rate depending on the consumption in 2016.
- If your peak demand was equal to or greater than 150 kW or your electricity use was more than 550,000 kWh in 2016, your account will be moved to the LGS rate.
- If your peak demand was less than 150 kW and your electricity use was equal to or less than 550,000 kWh in 2016, your account will be moved to the MGS rate.
Energy conservation is a big part of the Climate Leadership Plan
The B.C. Government introduced the Climate Leadership Plan in August 2016 and one of the ways we're supporting this plan is to develop programs for improving the energy efficiency of businesses, including incentives for upgrades and opportunities to learn from experts.
Making investments into energy efficiency can help your business save energy and money, improving your performance and your bottom line.
Rate Design Application, Module 2
The 2015 Rate Design Application, Module 1 determined the default rates for our customers. We know that some customer groups may have special requirements that aren't addressed by the current default rates.
We're starting to gather customer and stakeholder feedback for Module 2 of the 2015 Rate Design Application. Learn more about Module 2.
Contact us by email if you have any questions about the 2015 Rate Design Application, Module 2.