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Subjects: BUSINESS CONTRACTS, Environmental, Social, and Governance Criteria

NEWS RELEASE ? BCUC Accepts FortisBC's 2022 Long Term Gas Resource Plan


VANCOUVER, British Columbia, March 20, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) accepted FortisBC Energy Inc.'s (FortisBC) 2022 Long-Term Gas Resource Plan (LTGRP), that outlines out FortisBC's plans to serve its customers energy needs and transition to a low-carbon energy future over the next 20 years.

In its application, FortisBC indicated that its plan had been shaped by developments in climate change policy. Specifically, the CleanBC plan and Roadmap to 2030, which set out the BC government's targets for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the province.

FortisBC's LTGRP included transitioning from conventional natural gas to renewable and low-carbon gases to decarbonize the gas supply; developing demand-side measure programs to reduce energy use among customers; developing low-carbon transportation infrastructure to reduce emissions in the sector; and investing in Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) to lower GHG emissions in marine fueling and global markets. 

The BCUC's public review of FortisBC's LTGRP considered BC's energy objectives, the adequacy and cost-effectiveness of FortisBC's demand-side measures or energy efficiency programs, and the interests of its current and future gas customers, among other things.

Following its review, the BCUC accepted FortisBC's LTGRP, as it satisfied the requirements of a long-term resource plan, and determined that it was a reasonable first step towards a low carbon future. However, the BCUC did not accept FortisBC's planned investments in LNG due to uncertainty in the LNG market. Based on the evidence filed, the BCUC was unable to determine whether pursuing sales or infrastructure investments in LNG would be beneficial to FortisBC customers or in the public interest.  

FortisBC was directed to file its next LTGRP with the BCUC by March 31, 2026. In its next LTGRP, the BCUC expects FortisBC to progress its steps towards a low-carbon future, supported by additional modelling on how demand may change because of the energy transition, and more details regarding the actions it will take to reduce GHG emissions.

For more information about the BCUC's decision or FortisBC's application, see our frequently asked questions, decision summary video, or the proceeding webpage.

Background

A long-term resource plan looks ahead at the next several years of energy demand. It is a guidebook for what, when, and how a utility will meet its customers' evolving energy needs.

Long-term resource plans must include an estimate of demand, a plan to reduce demand, and a plan for energy purchases and facilities required to meet demand. Together these items outline the need for short-term actions, and a range of possible long-term scenarios that can happen over time.

The LTGRP assists with the review other FortisBC applications, such as capital projects, demand side management programs, and energy purchase agreements.

About the BCUC 

The BCUC is an independent regulatory body, responsible for regulating BC's energy utilities, basic automobile insurance rates, and intra-provincial pipeline rates. It is the BCUC's role to balance the interests of ratepayers and other stakeholders with the interests of the businesses it regulates. The BCUC carries out fair and transparent reviews of matters within its jurisdiction. The BCUC is also the Administrator of BC's Fuel Price Transparency Act and is responsible for collecting and publishing information about gasoline and diesel activities in BC, in an effort to promote competitiveness and public confidence in the fuel market.

CONTACT INFORMATION 

Krissy Van Loon
Manager, Communications  
Phone: 604.660.4727
Email: [email protected]  



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