In developing its supply plan, Gaz Métro determines the planned number of interruption days based on a "basic scenario," which considers a projected demand at the normal temperature1, as well as various supply plan tools available for the winter period. Let's examine each element more specifically.
Bolstered by this notice and the government's support, Gaz Métro, along with its Ontario distribution partners, Union Gas and Enbridge, signed an agreement in principle with TCPL on August 17, 2015 regarding Québec and Ontario's gas supply as part of the Energy East Project.
This agreement resolves several uncertainties for eastern Ontario and Québec consumers regarding the gas market context. TCPL will therefore amend its application for the Energy East and Eastern Mainline projects before the National Energy Board (NEB) to reflect the content of the agreement. As such, TCPL will assume the construction risks associated with the project. The transport capacity offered will be based on the call for tenders for the new 2017 capacity, will include an excess capacity of 50,000 GJ/day put at the disposal of the Eastern Canada market and will generate $100M for Eastern Canada customers by 2050.
The final agreement between distributors and TCPL should be concluded by October 30, 2015 at the latest.
A new gas environment, a high number of migrations to firm service over the last few years and a request from the Régie regarding the possibility of implementing interruptible service to cover the demand recorded on the coldest days have led Gaz Métro to seek alternative solutions to its current interruptible offer.
In this context, from September 14 to 22, Gaz Métro held a series of meetings with several major industry customers to present new offers available for the interruptible service. These meetings served to obtain customers' opinions and assess their potential interest in participating in the new interruptible offer, based on the different scenarios contemplated.
Gaz Métro plans to submit an application for approval to the Régie regarding the new interruptible natural gas option in the fall of 2015. For more information regarding the consultation, please contact your advisor.
Gaz Métro suggested that the Régie render a partial decision on all rate aspects as of November 2015 in order to be able to apply final rates for 2016 as of January 1, 2016. At the time of writing, the Régie had not yet indicated whether it would approve this request. If it does, the regulatory backlog seen over the last few years would be completely cleared.
Gaz Métro thus recommended upgrading the existing Saint-Maurice compression station ($31 M) and adding a compression station near the city of La Tuque ($50 M). These investments will increase the Saguenay network's capacity by 59,000 m³/hr, or 51%. Although these investments total $81 M, the realization of the new volumes should nevertheless generate a rate reduction for customers.
Good news: on July 22, 2015, the Régie authorized the investment project. The project will extend over three years and should be completed in the winter of 2017–2018. In the meantime, contractual agreements have been made with TCPL to ensure the supply reliability of this transmission network.
1 The normal temperature corresponds to the average temperature recorded since 1970, adjusted to take into account climate change.