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FortisBC supply outlook positive as Enbridge line repair nears completion

Canadian electric utility FortisBC Inc. informed customers Dec. 17 that an Enbridge Inc. natural gas transmission pipeline that ruptured in British Columbia has returned to 85% of its normal operating capacity and they can resume regular usage.

FortisBC urged customers to "conserve energy wherever possible" after the Oct. 9 incident, which limited supply to 50% to 80% of usual levels.

"Thanks to your conservation efforts, coupled with Enbridge's pipeline returning to 85% operating capacity, mild winter weather and our healthy storage levels, BC's natural gas supply outlook is more optimistic," the Fortis Inc. unit said in a statement on its website.

FortisBC also said its customers will see an interim increase to their bills as a result of the pipeline rupture. FortisBC serves about 1 million gas customers in the province.

Enbridge shut down the natural gas transmission pipeline near Prince George, British Columbia, after it ruptured Oct. 9, causing a fire and the evacuation of about 100 members of the Lheidli T'enneh First Nation community.