On 24 March, 2020 Revelstoke has one of the highest gas prices in the province. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)

B.C. expands gas price tracking to four communities this summer

Complaints of unfair pricing spurred the investigation

The B.C. Utilities Commission will be keeping a close eye on gas prices in four cities this summer.

The Fuel Transparency Act allows the commission to legally require companies to share specific retail pricing data, which the commission will then share on gaspricesbc.ca.

“Businesses have an obligation to be fair and not take undue advantage,” Energy Minister Bruce Ralston said.

The commission will collect data from June 1 to Sept. 30 from gas stations in Revelstoke, Powell River, Port Alberni and Squamish.

These municipalities were chosen based on the amount of public feedback that was received from those communities. The commission will also collect data from Langley and Nanaimo for comparison.

In March 2020, Revelstoke had one of the highest gas prices in the province at $1.17 per litre. According to GasBuddy, the average price for gas in the province at the time was $1.05 per litre.

READ MORE: Gas prices in Revelstoke one of highest in province

The collection and publication of the data is an effort to promote competitiveness and public confidence in the fuel market, however, the commission does not regulate fuel prices.

Ralston said he does not want to speculate on the outcomes of the investigation, but the act allows for some steps to be taken to ensure accountability and fairness.

MLA for Columbia River-Revelstoke, Doug Clovechok, sent a letter in April demanding answers to the stark differences in gas prices within the constituency.

“Over the past month, Columbia River-Revelstoke, along with many regions across British Columbia, have seen a decrease in gasoline prices as a result of the low demand for oil around the globe,” Clovechok wrote. “On average, prices have fallen roughly 15 cents per litre. However, our region of the province has seen unusual fluctuations in gas prices that have my constituents rightly concerned.”

READ MORE:MLA Clovechok urging government to explain Revelstoke’s high gas prices

Today (June 15), the day the investigation was announced, Clovechok said he is pleased that the minister took action.

“Whether you live in Revelstoke, Golden, the Columbia Valley, or Kimberley, the people of my riding not only deserve answers, but deserve prices that reflect those found in other areas of the province,” he said. “I look forward to the [commission]’s report.”

The Fuel Transparency Act became law in November 2019, following an investigation by the commission that found a lack of competition and substantial markups on gas in the province, including a 10-13 cents per litre premium being charged that the industry was unable to explain.


 

@JDoll_Revy
jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Gas prices

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Witset releases COVID-19 strategy following three confirmed cases

Plan implements strict measures to contain spread of the virus

Meet the 10-year-old girl who grew a pineapple in northern B.C.

Emily Atkins discovers it takes a lot of patience to grow tropical fruit in a temperate climate

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Single-engine aircraft crashes near Telkwa

Two occupants of the plane sustained minor injuries and were transported to hospital

UPDATE: Search continues for Thomas (Tommy) Dennis missing from near Kitwanga

Tommy Dennis was last seen Sept 16 wearing blue jeans, black cap, rubber boots, grey checked sweater

Quirky Canadian comedy ‘Schitt’s Creek’ takes Emmys by storm with comedy sweep

Toronto-raised Daniel Levy and Ottawa-born Annie Murphy both got supporting actor nods

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

181 days gone: Family continues to look for man last seen in RCMP custody 6 months ago

Brandon Sakebow’s last known location was leaving Mission RCMP cell, police say; family has doubts

B.C. unveils new cannabis sales programs to help small, Indigenous growers

Government did not say how it will define small producers, but says nurseries will be included in the policy

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

Most Read