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The Alberta Utilities Commission regulates Alberta’s investor-owned electric, gas, water utilities and certain municipally owned electric utilities to ensure that customers receive safe and reliable service at just and reasonable rates.

The AUC also regulates the routes, tolls and tariffs of energy transmission through utility pipelines and electric transmission and distribution lines. Companies who propose to construct or rebuild electric generation, transmission or distribution facilities in Alberta, must apply to the Commission for siting approval. When reviewing the utility's application, the Commission considers the social and environmental impacts, as well as any economic implications for the rate payers.

Furthermore, the AUC also provides an adjudicative function for issues arising in Alberta’s electric and natural gas markets.

Below is a list of some of the companies regulated by the AUC. Please note that we are unable to provide a comprehensive list due to the non-traditional nature of some utility services (such as micro-generation) and the continuous changes to the utility industry. This list is provided to give the reader some background on the regulated utility services provided by the following companies and to provide examples of the activities which are regulated by the AUC.

Investor-owned electric utilities

ATCO Electric Ltd.

ATCO Electric delivers electric transmission and distribution service to almost two thirds of the area of Alberta, primarily in northern and eastern Alberta. The AUC approves AE’s rates and terms and conditions of service. Any electric transmission facilities that AE builds are required to have AUC approval. The AUC also has limited jurisdiction over any new generating facilities proposed by ATCO Electric.

Direct Energy Regulated Services

Direct Energy Regulated Services is the regulated rate provider that provides billing and supplies electricity services for ATCO Electric customers that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer. The AUC sets Direct Energy Regulated Services' rates and terms and conditions of service.

FortisAlberta Inc.

Fortis delivers electric distribution service to southern and central Alberta. The AUC sets Fortis’ rates and terms and conditions of service.

EPCOR Energy Services (EPCOR)

EPCOR is the default, regulated retailer that provides billing services and supplies electricity for Fortis customers that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer. The AUC sets EPCOR’s rates and terms and conditions of service.

 

Municipally owned electric utilities
ENMAX Power Corp.

ENMAX Power owns and operates an electric distribution system that delivers power to customers in the City of Calgary. ENMAX Power and ENMAX Energy are owned by the City of Calgary. In 2004 the AUC began regulating both ENMAX Power and ENMAX Energy’s rates and terms and conditions of service.

 
ENMAX Energy Corp.

ENMAX Energy is the default, regulated retailer that provides billing services and supplies electricity to Calgarians that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer.

EPCOR Distribution Inc.

EPCOR Distribution delivers power to customers in the City of Edmonton. EPCOR Distribution is owned by the City of Edmonton. In 2004 the AUC began regulating EPCOR Distribution and EPCOR Energy’s rates and terms and conditions of service.

EPCOR Energy Services

EPCOR Energy is the default, regulated retailer that provides billing services and supplies electricity to Edmontonians that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer.

 

 

 

 

Investor-owned natural gas utilities
AltaGas Utilities Inc.

AltaGas delivers natural gas to many Albertans. The AUC sets AltaGas' rates and terms and conditions for delivery of service. AltaGas is also the regulated default supply provider that provides billing services and supplies the natural gas for AltaGas customers that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer. The AUC sets AltaGas rates and terms and conditions for the default supply service.

ATCO Gas

ATCO Gas delivers natural gas to the majority of Albertans. The AUC sets ATCO Gas' rates and terms and conditions of service.

Direct Energy Regulated Services

Direct Energy Regulated Services is the regulated default supply provider that provides billing services and supplies the natural gas for ATCO Gas customers that have not signed a contract with a competitive retailer. The AUC sets Direct Energy Regulated Services rates and terms and conditions of service

 

Investor-owned water utilities
CU Water Ltd.

CU Water provides water services to customers located in a portion of east-central Alberta. The AUC sets their rates and terms and conditions of service.

Langdon Waterworks Ltd.

Langdon provides water service to a small area in the Municipal District of Rocky View. The AUC sets their rates and terms and conditions of services.

Regional Water Service Ltd.

The AUC sets Regional Water Service Ltd.'s rates and terms and conditions of services.

Westridge Utilities Inc.

The AUC sets Westridge's rates and terms and conditions of services.

 

Pipeline transmission companies
ATCO Gas & Pipelines Ltd.

The AUC regulates the tolls, tariffs and service regulations for ATCO Gas & Pipelines. The AUC also regulates the construction of new pipeline transmission facilities. Through a Memorandum of Understanding, on behalf of the AUC, the AER monitors and oversees the  decommissioning of pipeline transmission facilities of ATCO Gas & Pipelines.

AltaGas Utilities Inc.

The AUC regulates the tolls, tariffs and service regulations for AltaGas. The AUC also regulates the construction of new pipeline transmission facilities. Through a Memorandum of Understanding, on behalf of the AUC, the AER monitors and oversees the  decommissioning of pipeline transmission facilities of AltaGas.

NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. 

Effective April 29, 2009, the TransCanada Alberta System, also known as NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. or NGTL, has been declared to be under federal jurisdiction and is subject to federal regulation by the National Energy Board

Prior to April 29, 2009, the Alberta System was regulated by the Alberta Utilities Commission in conjunction with the Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB).

Questions about the NEB’s regulation of the Alberta System, or about the organization’s regulations and processes are welcomed by the NEB. Please contact the NEB toll free at 1-800-899-1265 if you have any questions. Further ways to contact the NEB can be found here, including an online contact form.

 

Electric facilities
AltaLink Management Ltd.

AltaLink is a regulated transmission utility. The AUC approves the rates AltaLink charges for electric transmission service. These charges are allocated to the retail customers and applied to both regulated and non-regulated retail electricity bills. AltaLink also files applications to the AUC when substations and transmission lines are needed after it has been determined in a separate application to the AUC by the Alberta Electric System Operator. For more information see AESO below.

 
Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO)

The AESO is responsible for the safe, reliable and economic operation of the province-wide electric transmission system, and is responsible for overall system planning and real-time operating the electric transmission system. If the AESO has identified a need for new or upgraded transmission lines, substations or other transmission system equipment, it must prepare a Needs Identification Document (NID) containing a recommendation for addressing the identified system need. NID applications are subject to AUC approval. The tariff charges of each Alberta transmission facility owner are paid by the AESO and are flowed through to high voltage load customers including Alberta distribution utilities through rates set out in the AESO’s transmission tariff. The AUC is responsible for approving the rates and terms and conditions of service of the AESO’s tariff.

TransAlta Corporation

Any proposed new electric generating units have to be approved by the AUC with respect to siting and environmental considerations. Decommissioning applications of electric generators are also reviewed by the AUC.

Micro-generation facilities

Numerous applicants that meet the definition of micro-generators apply to generate their own environmentally friendly electricity and receive credit for any power they send into the electricity grid. Rule 024: Rules Respecting Micro-Generation, sets out the AUC requirements and the Micro-Generation Application Guideline provides a step-by-step process on how to apply, including the forms needed in an application to the AUC.

 

Markets
Alberta Electric System Operator

The Independent System Operator (ISO), which operates under the trade name Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO), may make rules as outlined in Section 20 of the Electric Utilities Act. Among other things, the AUC may hear objections to of complaints regarding ISO rules, adjudicate contraventions of ISO rules and hear complaints regarding the conduct of the ISO. 

Market Surveillance Administrator

The Market Surveillance Administrator (MSA) monitors the Alberta electricity and natural gas markets for fairness and balance in the public interest - checking that they operated in a fair, efficient, and openly competitive manner. Among other things, the AUC has established specified penalties that may be imposed by the MSA, may adjudicate cases that are brought to the Commission by the MSA and hear complaints regarding the conduct of the MSA.

 

The AUC does not regulate
Rural electric associations (REAs)**

If customers have questions or concerns regarding REAs they can contact the Alberta Federation of Rural Electrification Associations or the Rural Utilities Branch of the government of Alberta at 780-427-0125.

Municipally owned utilities**

With the exception of EPCOR in Edmonton and ENMAX in Calgary, the AUC does not regulate municipally-owned utilities. If customers have questions or concerns about a municipally owned utility they can contact the municipality directly.

Natural gas co-ops**

If customers have questions or concerns regarding natural gas co-ops they can contact the board of directors of the gas co-op, the Federation of Alberta Gas Co-ops Ltd., or the Rural Utilities branch of the government of Alberta at 780-427-0125.

** While the AUC does not have full authority over the above, if a consumer has a concern about rates, tolls, tariffs that are being charged by an REA, co-op or a municipally owned utility they can contact Consumer Relations.

Competitive retailers

The AUC does not set any of the rates or terms and conditions of service for competitive retailers, retailers that customers sign a contract with for a set price schedule of the energy commodity.
Customers of competitive retailers are subject to the terms agreed to in the contract.
For more information on competitive retailers available, visit the Utilities Consumer Advocate’s website.