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Canadian Utilities Limited – Application for Transfer of Ownership Interest in ASHCOR Technologies Ltd (AUC Decision 25118-D01-2019)

Link to Decision Summarized

Public Utilities Act Section 101, Gas Utilities Act Section 26, No-harm Test

In this decision, the AUC considered whether to approve Canadian Utilities Limited’s (“CUL”) request to transfer its indirect ownership interest in ASHCOR Technologies Ltd. (“ASHCOR”) to ATCO Ltd. (“ATCO”). The AUC approved CUL’s application.


CUL controls CU Inc., which in turn owns 100 per cent of ATCO Electric Ltd. and ATCO Gas and Pipelines Ltd. (the “ATCO Utilities”). Pursuant to the Designation Regulations, CUL is a designated owner of a public utility for the purposes of sections 101, 102 and 109 of the Public Utilities Act and a designated owner of a gas utility for the purposes of sections 26 and 27 of the Gas Utilities Act.

CUL provided details of the transaction in which CUL would sell its indirect ownership interest in ASHCOR (an independent marketer of fly ash and other combustion by-products) to ATCO (the “ASHCOR Share Transaction”). 

CUL submitted that the ASHCOR Share Transaction would not adversely affect any member of the public of Alberta who is currently receiving utility service or who will receive utility service from the regulated ATCO Utilities.

AUC findings

The AUC found the ASHCOR Share Transaction outside of the ordinary course of business for CUL, and accordingly noted that it had to be approved by the AUC. It applied the no-harm test and found that the transaction would not have potentially harmful operational effects on regulated customers that may impair the integrity and reliability of the two systems operated by the ATCO Utilities. The AUC also found that approval of the application would not result in any financial harm to customers.

The AUC found that the requirements of the no-harm test were satisfied and approved the ASHCOR Share Transaction.

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