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Fact sheet: BC Hydro rates

New rate

  • On April 1, BC Hydro rates will increase by 3.5 per cent or about $3.75 per month for residential customers.
  • In 2013, a 10-Year Plan was announced for BC Hydro rates. This marks the fourth year of that plan.

Lowest rates in North America

  • BC Hydro has among the lowest rates in North America.
  • Adjusting for inflation, electricity in B.C. costs the same today as it did back in 1976. In fact, the average family pays more than twice as much for their TV, internet and phone services than they do for their electricity.
  • Below is a comparison of monthly residential electricity bills in several major cities across North America (2016 Hydro Quebec report):

 

Montreal $83
Edmonton $109
Vancouver $114
Seattle
$136
Halifax $167
Ottawa $182
Toronto $201
Boston $276
San Francisco $310
New York $321


*Based on use of 1,000 kilowatt hours/ month, including taxes and in Canadian dollars

Revenue Requirements Application

BC Hydro filed a full Revenue Requirements Application for the entire three-year period from fiscal 2017 to fiscal 2019 last summer.

  • BC Hydro has applied for rate increases that are consistent with the 10-Year Plan: 4 per cent (fiscal 2017), 3.5 per cent (fiscal 2018) and 3 per cent (fiscal 2018).
  • The BC Utilities Commission has approved the fiscal 2018 rate on an interim basis.
  • The Commission is expected to make a decision on the full application in the coming months.

Capital projects

  • BC Hydro is investing more than $2 billion a year, over the next 10 years, in B.C.'s electricity system.
  • Many of BC Hydro's facilities were built in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, and BC Hydro must make investments in aging infrastructure and new projects to meet growing demand for power.
  • Over the past five years, BC Hydro has completed 563 capital projects at a total cost of $6.48 billion – about $12 million under budget.
  • Upcoming projects include:
    • Site C – a third dam and hydroelectric generating station on the Peace River that will provide enough electricity to power the equivalent of about 450,000 homes per year ($8.335 billion).
    • John Hart generating station – a new generating facility and pipelines that will meet today's seismic safety expectations ($1.093 billion).

Conservation programs

  • Since 2002, BC Hydro has invested over $1.4 billion in conservation – about $100 million per year on average.
  • Over the next three years, BC Hydro will invest $7.8 million for targeted low income programs.
  • Last year, conservation programs achieved cumulative energy savings of 5,091 gigawatt hours. That’s enough to power 485,000 homes.