Union Gas applies for rate increase

Union Gas customers in northwestern Ontario could pay more to heat their homes starting next month.

Union Gas customers in northwestern Ontario could pay more to heat their homes starting next month.

The company has applied to the Ontario Energy Board for a rate increase that would take effect April 1.

Union Gas spokesperson Carrie Dudley-Tatsu said the average residential customer in the region could pay about $190 more on an annual basis.

Customers in southern Ontario would pay about $200 more.

"You know we've had a very cold winter, record temperatures across North America, which has led to an increase in demand," Dudley-Tatsu said. 

She said the rate increase reflects market prices that the company expects to pay to its suppliers in the next year.

Dudley-Tatsu noted that rates are still lower than those seen a decade ago.  

She added that the natural gas supply in Canada is "plentiful" and that the company's long-term forecast is that prices will remain "relatively low" well into the next decade.