Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution

Case number
EB-2019-0255
Launched
Sector
Natural Gas
Status
Active
Details

The Ontario government has announced its intention to further increase access to natural gas by making additional projects eligible for financial support to serve communities that are not currently connected to a natural gas distribution system. The government intends for approximately $130 million in ratepayer funded financial support to be made available for new projects that can reasonably be expected to commence construction between 2021 and 2023.

On December 12, 2019, through a letter issued under section 35 of the Ontario Energy Board Act, 1998, the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, with the support of the Associate Minister of Energy, asked the OEB to examine potential projects and report back to the Ministry as an input to assist the government in making a determination on future expansion projects.

The OEB is expected to report back to the Ministry by August 31, 2020. A focus of the OEB’s review will be whether the proposed projects can be implemented substantially as proposed. Among other things, the OEB will analyze the proposed project costs and timelines, as well as the technical expertise and financial capability of proponents not already regulated by the OEB. Proponents will be expected to demonstrate local support for their projects, as well as a commitment to be held to the costs, timelines and volume forecasts for their projects as filed with the OEB.

On December 19, 2019, the OEB issued draft Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution for stakeholder comment. We received comments from 21 stakeholders, including natural gas distributors, compressed natural gas and liquefied natural gas service providers, ratepayer groups, industry associations, environmental groups and groups representing Indigenous peoples.

On March 5, 2020, the OEB issued its final Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution. The OEB stated that interested project proponents that wish to file project information for inclusion in the OEB’s Report to the Ministry must do so by June 3, 2020. 

On April 29, 2020, the OEB issued a letter providing an opportunity for proponents to identify any project proposals that may not be completed by the June 3, 2020 deadline due to the COVID-19 emergency. The letter also asked proponents to indicate if they would benefit from a 60-day extension to address the disruption caused by the COVID-19 emergency. The OEB stated that information provided by proponents in response to the letter would be shared with the Ministry for its consideration regarding this initiative. 

On May 15, 2020, the OEB received a letter from the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and the Associate Minister of Energy granting a 60-day extension for the OEB to submit the Report from August 31 to October 31, 2020. Accordingly, the OEB will extend the deadline for proponents to file project information to August 4, 2020

Project information for eligible projects provided by interested proponents will be posted on the OEB’s website after the deadline for filing information has passed.

The OEB does not anticipate inviting comments on the proposed expansion projects. Decisions as to which proposed projects will be eligible for ratepayer-funded financial support will be made by the government.

View all documents for this initiative

Updates
Updates
Date Issue / Document
July 29, 2020

The OEB has received a letter from Enbridge Gas requesting that all information related to projects proposed by Enbridge Gas and any other proponent be kept confidential and not be posted on the OEB’s website or made available pursuant to declarations and undertakings as currently contemplated by the OEB.

 

The OEB has issued a letter asking interested proponents to provide comments related to Enbridge Gas’ request for project information to be kept confidential.

May 15, 2020

The OEB is extending the deadline to file project information to August 4, 2020.

 

The OEB has posted a letter from the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, with the support of the Associate Minister of Energy, extending the deadline for the OEB to report back to the Ministry from no later than August 31, 2020, to no later than October 31, 2020.

April 29, 2020

The OEB has issued a letter asking interested proponents to identify any project proposals that may not be completed by the June 3, 2020 deadline due to the COVID-19 emergency.

April 17, 2020

The OEB has updated the FAQs regarding the Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution.

April 14, 2020

The OEB has prepared FAQs to assist proponents with questions regarding the Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution.

March 5, 2020

The OEB has issued its final Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution. Interested project proponents that wish to file project information for inclusion in the OEB’s report to the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines must do so by June 3, 2020.

January 17, 2020

The OEB has received the following comments on the draft Guidelines:

December 19, 2019

The OEB has issued a letter with draft Guidelines for Potential Projects to Expand Access to Natural Gas Distribution for stakeholder comment. Comments on the draft Guidelines are due by January 15, 2019.

December 12, 2019

The OEB has posted a letter from the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, with the support of the Associate Minister of Energy, asking the OEB to examine and report back on potential natural gas expansion projects. The OEB’s report will be an input to assist the government in making a determination on future expansion projects. This letter was issued under section 35 of the Ontario Energy Board Act, 1998.

Cost Award Matters
Cost Award Matters
Date Issue / Document
July 15, 2020

The OEB has issued a Decision and Order on Cost Awards.

May 19, 2020

The OEB has issued a Notice of Hearing for Cost Awards.

January 15, 2020

The OEB has issued a Supplemental Decision on Cost Award Eligibility.

January 8, 2020

The OEB has issued a Supplemental Decision on Cost Award Eligibility.

December 30, 2019

The OEB has issued a Decision on Cost Award Eligibility.