We are here to help.

Find answers to your frequently asked questions about who we are, what we do, and how you can get involved in our review process.

General

What is the BCUC and what do you regulate?

The British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) is an independent agency of the Government of British Columbia that regulates BC’s energy utilities, the Insurance Corporation of BC’s (ICBC) compulsory automobile insurance rates, intra-provincial pipelines and the reliability of the electrical transmission grid.

In March 2020, the BCUC was also named as the Administrator of the Fuel Price Transparency Act. We are responsible for ensuring customers receive safe, reliable services at fair rates from the organizations we regulate. We operate under and administer the Utilities Commission Act. To learn more about the BCUC, visit Our Role.

Who governs the BCUC?

The BCUC is governed primarily by the Utilities Commission Act and Clean Energy Act. We also adhere to sections of the Administrative Tribunals Act, BC Hydro and Power Authority Act, Insurance Corporation Act, and Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. In March 2020, we were also named the Administrator of the Fuel Price Transparency Act.

What is the Natural Gas Customer Choice Program?

The Natural Gas Customer Choice Program offers consumers the freedom to choose whether they would like to purchase their natural gas from an independent gas marketer or FortisBC. For more information, please visit our page on the Natural Gas Customer Choice Program.

Making a Complaint

How do I make a complaint against a utility?

First, you should make every effort to resolve any complaints with your utility before contacting the BCUC. If the utility is unable to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction, you can file a complaint with us by visiting our Complaint Process.

Where should I send a letter about general concerns I have with a utility?

There are two ways to send information or concerns to the BCUC; by email or by mail.

Email: complaints@bcuc.com

Commission Secretary
British Columbia Utilities Commission
Suite 410, 900 Howe Street
Vancouver, BC Canada V6Z 2N3

Participating in a Proceeding

How do I participate in a BCUC proceeding or review?

We value input from all British Columbians into our processes, as we want to ensure all views are represented when making decisions. There are several ways to get involved in our processes.

  • Request Intervener Status: to actively participate
  • Submit a Letter of Comment: to share your views, opinions, and insights regarding the potential impact of a matter before the BCUC
  • Register as an Interested Party: to receive email notifications for all public information filed by parties during the BCUC’s proceeding
  • Attend a BCUC Event (if applicable): to learn more about a BCUC proceeding and share their views in-person with the BCUC panel

To learn more about getting involved in BCUC processes, visit Get Involved.

How do I find information about an application or public proceeding?

The BCUC lists all information about proceedings that are in progress and completed on our website under Proceedings.

How do I apply to be an Intervener?

A person, group, or organization that would like to actively participate in a BCUC proceeding can apply to become an Intervener by completing a Request to Intervene form on bcuc.com. Interveners help ensure various perspectives are represented in the BCUC’s proceedings.

Interveners are expected to participate actively, responsibly, and respectfully for the duration of the proceeding. For more information about becoming an Intervener, or the BCUC’s existing Interveners, see our Intervening in BCUC Activities Fact Sheet.

Do I have to re-register as an Intervener or Interested Party for every application I’m interested in?

Yes, you are required to register separately as an Intervener or Interested Party for every application. If you have registered to participate in a hearing in the past twelve (12) months, please send an email stating your username and the name of the proceeding which you are interested in to commission.secretary@bcuc.com. After twelve (12) months of inactivity the username will be deleted.

Utilities

Where can I find general information about a utility?

Information about a utility may be listed in several places: on your utility bill, on the utility’s website, or on the utility’s social media channels, if applicable. Alternatively, our Annual Reports contain basic information about the utilities we regulate. For more information, please visit the Our Role webpage.

Where can I find a list of the utilities you regulate?

A list of all the utilities the BCUC regulates can be found at the bottom of the Energy Utilities page.

Can a utility legally cut off my gas/electricity service?

Yes, a utility can legally stop providing gas or electricity services to a customer if payment has not been made for those services. Customers disconnected for non-payment of bills should contact their utility directly to inquire about reconnection options.

Are security deposits legal? How long does the utility hold my security deposit?

Yes, under some circumstances, security deposits may be a requirement for service. Utilities may hold onto security deposits indefinitely, or until such time as a customer either terminates service or applies for a refund. Interest is paid on the security deposit at the prime rate with which the utility conducts its business.

Emergencies and Outages

Who should I contact regarding a gas leak?

If there is a gas leak, or you suspect a gas leak, please contact your local utility's emergency line immediately. The utility’s number is listed on your utility bill or on their website.

Who should I contact regarding a power outage?

Please contact your local power utility. Utility phone numbers are listed on your utility bill or on the utility’s website.

Fuel Price Transparency Act

What is the Fuel Price Transparency Act?

Bill 42 - Fuel Price Transparency Act was introduced in the BC Legislature on Nov. 18, 2019 and requires companies in BC to report information and data on their activities in the gasoline and diesel fuel market in the province. Bill 42 received Royal Assent and became law on Nov. 27, 2019.

What is the BCUC’s role in the FPT Act?

The BCUC is the Administrator of the Fuel Price Transparency Act which:

  • Promotes the competitiveness of the market for reportable fuels.
  • Promotes public confidence in the competitiveness of that market.
  • Administer provisions of the Fuel Price Transparency Act in accordance with any general or special directions of the minister.
  • Publishes the data received from companies on the market conditions involved with setting fuel prices in BC.
  • The BCUC has created a website at GasPricesBC.ca to publish the data received from companies on the market conditions that are involved with setting fuel prices in BC.

Where can I find the Gas Prices BC website?

You can visit the Gas Prices BC website at GasPricesBC.ca.

Why does the Gas Prices BC website exist?

  • As the Administrator of the FPT Act, the BCUC established the GasPricesBC.ca website to provide the public with more information about what factors are influencing fuel prices in BC.
  • The data on the website may also be used to inform the BC government if policy changes need to be made to address fuel competitiveness in BC.

Who is submitting data to the BCUC under the FPT Act?

Companies involved in the wholesale fuel industry are required to submit fuel data reports to the BCUC, as outlined in the FPT Regulations. Fuel retail dealers involved in the Retail Pilot are required to submit fuel data to the BCUC in accordance with Special Direction to Section 4 of the Fuel Price Transparency Act.

Other

Who should I contact regarding a complaint against a phone or cable company?

The BCUC does not regulate the telecommunications industry. You should contact your local phone or cablevision company and try to resolve the problem, or contact the Canadian Radio- television & Communications Commission (CRTC) to file a complaint.

Who regulates automobile gas prices?

Automobile fuel prices in BC are not regulated. To find out more about gasoline prices, please visit the Government of Canada's FAQ or GasPricesBC.ca.

Who regulates water utilities?

The BCUC does not regulate water utilities. For information on water utilities, please contact the Office of the Comptroller of Water Rights. Contact information for the office is available online at here.

Contact Us

If you have a question that was not answered above, please get in touch.

Contact us