The AUC encourages the public to get involved in the application process to assist the Commission in arriving at decisions that are in the best interest of Alberta.
There are various ways that the public is able to get involved in matters brought before the AUC.
Transmission needs and utility facilities applications
Applications proposing the need for transmission upgrades in Alberta are submitted to the AUC by the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) for approval. The typical application process for determining need is followed for needs applications, however the needs identification document (NID) filed by the AESO is presumed to be correct and it is the intervener’s responsibility to provide arguments and evidence that proves the application is technically deficient or contrary to the public interest. The transmission facility owner assigned to the project by the AESO will submit a separate facility application which will contain the precise location or route. Both applications may be submitted concurrently and the AUC may consider both applications in one proceeding. Facility applications are submitted to fulfil the need for transmission outlined by the AESO in its need application. The facility application will contain precise routing and details about the proposed project. Other facility applications submitted to the AUC include the construction, operation, alteration and decommissioning of power generation and gas utility pipeline facilities.
Your involvement in facility applications should begin even before an application is submitted to the AUC. Please see how to participate in a facility application. Effective public consultation initiated by the applicant, as required in Rule 007 and Rule 020, often gives a person who may be directly and adversely affected by a proposed project a greater influence on project planning. When a facility application is received the AUC will provide direct notice of receiving the application to those who are within 800 metres of a proposed project and for larger projects the notice will also be advertised in the local newspaper(s). If your concerns about the project are unresolved at the time of the AUC notice you can register to participate in the proceeding.
We prefer that you use our eFiling System to make your submission as you will then be able to access all of the information being considered in the proceeding. The eFiling System page has more information on how to use our electronic filing system.
Once you have made your submission you may continue to work with the applicant to resolve any issues you may have with the proposed project. If no issues are outstanding the AUC may not require a hearing to continue to review the application and form a decision regarding the application. Other times a public hearing is required to bring all parties together to publicly express their views and present their evidence in support of, or in opposition to an application. Some participants who qualify as a local intervener, as defined in Section 22 of the Alberta Utilities Commission Act may be eligible to receive local intervener costs. Full details about the cost claim process and eligible costs for local interveners is found in Rule 009.
More information on getting involved in need and facility applications with the AUC can be found in the Public involvement in needs or facility applications brochure, on the AUC YouTube channel and on our virtual information session page.
Rates, tariffs and terms and conditions of serviceRetail energy services are deregulated in Alberta and you have a choice of retailers If you do not make a choice you will remain with the default regulated option with the regulated retailer in your area.
Regulated retailers and transmission and distribution companies must apply to the AUC for approval of their rates and terms and conditions of service to ensure they are just and reasonable. If an Alberta consumer is concerned about the rates or the terms and conditions of service that they are subject to, they are able to get directly involved in rate applications submitted to the AUC as an intervener.
In order to obtain procedural rights and to actively participate in the proceeding, parties must submit a statement of intent to participate (SIP) before the deadline indicated in the notice of application.
The Utilities Consumer Advocate (UCA) was created by the Alberta government to represent Alberta residential, farm and small commercial utility consumers in regulatory rate hearings. The collaboration made possible by the UCA helps to reduce duplication of intervener efforts and regulatory hearing costs. Because the costs of regulatory proceedings, including all approved legal and consulting fees for interveners, end up in consumers’ utility rates, the AUC recommends that concerned consumers contact the UCA who will intervene in rate proceedings on your behalf. For those who would like to participate and for those who are not represented by the UCA full details about the cost claim process for eligible interveners involved in rate proceedings are found in Rule 022.
Utility concerns The process for addressing your concerns regarding utility rates, tariffs, terms and conditions of service is to first contact your service provided directly. However, if you are still dissatisfied you may contact our Consumer Relations group to log your complaint. The AUC will do its best to resolve your concern, within our jurisdictional authority, by mediating the process between you and the utility to come to a resolution. At times a resolution is not met and a public hearing will be required.