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

Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive garnishes generous portions

Food donations will sustain the Prince Rupert Food Bank for three months.

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

Haida hereditary chief is BC Liberal Candidate for North Coast Region

Roy Jones Jr. is named BC Liberal MLA candidate for the North Coast

$3.4 million childcare centre to be built in Lax Kw’alaams

Lax Kw’alaams funding has been approved through the provincial New Spaces Fund

COVID-19 cases grow to 13 at B.C. First Nation near Fort St. James

“This is very serious,” says Nak’azdli Whut’en Chief

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

Victoria-area RCMP locate high-risk sex offender thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Most Read