May 27th, 2024

Alberta government announces plan to protect consumers from power price swings

By The Canadian Press on April 18, 2024.

The Alberta government is proposing measures that aim to protect power consumers from wild price swings. Alberta Premier Danielle Smith speaks to reporters on the sidelines of the Canada Strong and Free Network event in Ottawa, Friday, April 12, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Spencer Colby

EDMONTON – The Alberta government is proposing measures, to take effect in January, that aim to protect power consumers from wild price swings.

Premier Danielle Smith says the default power rate – currently called the Regulated Rate Option – is misleadingly named because it can vary monthly according to weather and global events.

She says her United Conservative Party government aims to introduce legislation this spring renaming it the Rate of Last Resort so consumers can better understand what they’ve signed up for.

Smith says her government is also planning set the Rate of Last Resort every two years for each provider so that there isn’t so much volatility.

The government would also require providers to confirm with customers whether they want to sign on to a competitive rate or stick with the default.

It would also have providers share with customers how to access Utilities Consumer Advocate resources and remind them of their options on their monthly bills.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 18, 2024.

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