Frequently Asked Questions - General
A Gas Co-op is a member owned utility that services its members. Gas Co-ops were created because there was not enough profit in the less densely populated rural areas of Alberta for the large private utility companies to serve. In 1975, the Alberta government passed the Rural Gas Act which provided government grants to ensure all rural communities were able to lower the installation cost of creating a gas network to feed their property.
Your gas bill has three (3) different components:
The first is the cost of gas. This is the total cost that Gas Alberta charges to purchase your natural gas on the open market. It is commonly called the wholesale rate to the Co-op.
The second is the distribution fees. These fees are the fees the Co-op charges to distribute the natural gas through its pipeline system. It includes all the operation, maintenance, administration, unaccounted for gas loss and payments to the capital reserve fund. These fees are typically set annually by the Board of Directors after the yearly operational budget is passed.
The last charge is the monthly fixed charge. This charge is a monthly fee that is charged to all customers. It is a revenue generating fee to ensure the Co-op has a fixed amount of income each month to ensure all members pay a fair portion of the costs of operating the Co-op. This fee is set annually by the Board of Directors.
Natural gas in Alberta is sold on the North American market. A broker in Texas or New York buys the gas from producers on the open market the same as Gas Alberta does. Prices vary depending on the supply, weather and other factors.
At Bow River Gas, we put an odorant in the gas called Mercaptan. This is what gives natural gas the distinctive odor. If you smell this coming from you gas appliances you should, get out (do not turn anything on or off including lights) and call the Bow River Gas Co-op. If you are not in danger, ensure the room is well ventilated and call the Bow River Gas Co-op to come out and fix the leak.
In order to get your gas service turned back on you will need to pay all fees that have been accrued. This includes all termination charges, outstanding gas and penalty charges. All reconnection fees must be paid in full. Customers with chronic arrear problems can also be required to provide the Co-op with a deposit.
At the Bow River Gas Co-op we accept Checks, Cash and Pre-authorized Debit. We also accept online payments from most major banks.
If you missed a payment or are unable to pay, please contact us and we will try and work with you to avoid unnecessary charges.