There are lots of things you can do to control how much electricity you use. You can turn off lights left on by the kids, hang your laundry instead of using the dryer, or install energy efficient appliances.
Controlling your electricity use is a great thing to do on many levels, but because of other fees or charges related to your electricity also fluctuate, it may not necessarily result in a lower bill at the end of every month.
Getting plugged in to what you pay
On your energy bill, one of the first things you’ll notice is that the energy charges related to your usage are only a portion is only a portion of the total due every month.
Even if you’re on a fixed-rate plan your bill will fluctuate month-to-month. This is not only because your consumption changes, but also because of increases or decreases in other associated fees, such as those listed under Delivery Charges.
Every energy provider in Alberta collects these charges, which go towards building and maintaining Alberta’s electricity and natural gas system. You’ll see similar, system-related fees listed with your sewer, water and waste services.
Where your electricity is concerned we’ve all seen increases to transmission and distribution charges that are connected to investments in electrical infrastructure across Alberta. Transmission fees go towards high-capacity transmission lines that move electricity from the source to communities across the province. Distribution fees support transmission of electricity within your city or town and also includes maintenance and upgrades to your local system.
Any changes to these fees are reviewed and approved by the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC). The Utilities Consumer Advocate’s website has a helpful page where you can read more about Understanding Your Bill.
You can learn more about the cost of electricity, and the factors that affect it by visiting the Canadian Electricity Association’s website.