We are an independent agency that has been given the power to carry out our work through legislation.

The British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) is primarily governed by the Utilities Commission Act and follows sections of the Clean Energy Act, Administrative Tribunals Act, Insurance Corporation Act, and Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The BCUC also administers BC’s Fuel Price Transparency Act.

As an independent regulator, we have the authority to use discretion when carrying out our work.

When reviewing applications, the BCUC exercises this authority to consider Intervener evidence, submissions, Letters of Comment, and government policy, as long it is within the BCUC’s mandate.

Government Involvement

However, the BC government can participate in BCUC proceedings, establish new regulations, or provide direction that the BCUC must follow.

Participating in Proceedings

The BC government can intervene or submit a Letter of Comment in applications before the BCUC to put forward a particular viewpoint. Submissions could include a request that the BCUC consider a particular policy objective in a proceeding, for example.

Establishing Regulations

Regulations address the details and practical applications of the law. They contain specific guidelines, definitions, and details, and have the force of law. The legislation that governs the BCUC defines who (e.g. BC Cabinet or a Minister) can make new regulations or change existing regulations.

Providing Direction

Section 3(2) of the UCA allows the Lieutenant Governor in Council (i.e. BC Cabinet) to give directions instructing the BCUC on how to exercise its powers, perform its duties, or refrain from doing either, under the UCA. These directions are provided through an Order in Council (OIC), which directs the BCUC to take action or not take action on a specific task and can include a variety of directions.

View Government Actions

The table below includes all directions the BCUC has received from the BC government. These can be searched by the following types:

Regulations

Or change in regulation or legislation.

Inquiries

To explore public policy issues that require technical expertise and public input, issued under Section 5 of the UCA. The Order in Council (OIC) may contain terms of reference that define the scope and require that the BCUC hold public hearings and report its findings and recommendations to the BC government.

Exemptions

To exempt certain projects, organizations, expenditures, or programs from the BCUC’s review, which can be issued as an OIC or a Ministerial Order (MO).

Applications

To review only certain aspects of an application, minimize the scope of a hearing, or follow certain procedure to meet public policy objectives.


Entity Year Category Description Corresponding Documents Proceeding Page
BC Hydro and Power Authority Customers 2018 Exemption On the recommendation of the BCUC, the BC government by MO M368 granted advance approval to the BCUC to exempt from Section 71 and Part 3 of the Utilities Commission Act, except Section 25, 38, 41 and 42, BC Hydro customers that resell electricity, where the lessor provides electricity only to the lessee at a price not exceeding that at which BC Hydro would have otherwise sold the electricity to the lessee, where the lease period is greater than five years and if the electricity is not resold to or used by others. The lessee is also exempted from the requirements of Section 71 of the Utilities Commission Act. Class Exemption for BC Hydro Customers that Resell Electricity Under Certain Lease Arrangements
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing. The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.
FortisBC Energy Inc. 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.

Our Role

Learn about how we regulate BC’s energy utilities, ICBC basic auto insurance, common carrier pipelines, and the reliability of the electrical transmission grid.

Learn more