Monthly Natural Gas Storage Survey (MNGS)

Detailed information for July 2017





Record number:


This monthly survey collects data on the activities of Canadian establishments primarily engaged in operating natural gas storage facilities.

Data release - September 22, 2017


This monthly survey collects data on the activities of Canadian establishments primarily engaged in operating natural gas storage facilities. Data collected cover information such as: opening and closing inventories, injections, withdrawals and heating value of stored natural gas.

These data are required for integration into the input-output sector of the Canadian System of National Accounts. Survey data are also required for international reporting by Natural Resources Canada to the International Energy Agency. Data are made available under the authority of the Statistics Act to other federal departments and provincial authorities through data sharing agreements subject to the embodied principles of data confidentiality. Data are intended for use by survey respondents, international departments and agencies, federal departments and agencies, provincial ministries and authorities, industry associations, industry analysts, the press and the general public to assess trends in the natural gas distribution and transportation sector of the Canadian economy.

Statistical activity

The survey is administered as part of the Integrated Business Statistics Program (IBSP). The IBSP program has been designed to integrate approximately 200 separate business surveys into a single master survey program. The IBSP aims at collecting industry and product detail at the provincial level while minimizing overlap between different survey questionnaires. The redesigned business survey questionnaires have a consistent look, structure and content.

The integrated approach makes reporting easier for firms operating in different industries because they can provide similar information for each branch operation. This way they avoid having to respond to questionnaires that differ for each industry in terms of format, wording and even concepts. The combined results produce more coherent and accurate statistics on the economy.

Reference period: Month

Collection period: 10 days after the reference period.


  • Energy

Data sources and methodology

Target population

The target population is comprised of all establishments in Canada engaged in operating natural gas storage facilities (NAICS 493190) under the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS 2012). The observed population are those establishments in the target population for which business information is available on Statistics Canada's Business Register.

Instrument design

The questionnaires were designed using Statistics Canada questionnaire design standards. The design was done in consultation with the survey's partners (i.e. provincial energy boards and the Canadian Gas Association). The questionnaire is respondent completed in paper format delivered by mail, fax or in electronic format.

The questionnaires are subject to regular revision to reflect changes in business activities and practices.


This survey is a census with a cross-sectional design.

Data are collected for all units of the target population, therefore no sampling is done.

The sampling unit is the enterprise as defined on the Statistics Canada Business Register.

The sample size for reference period January 2017 is 17 establishments or 15 enterprises.

Data sources

Responding to this survey is mandatory.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents.

This questionnaire is sent to all establishments that operate natural gas storage facilities in Canada.

Data are collected monthly using an electronic questionnaire. Respondents are asked to submit the completed questionnaire within 10 days of receipt. Upon receipt, the data from the questionnaire are processed directly into the Integrated Business Statistics Program (IBSP). Editing is performed to ensure the validity of the collected data. Follow-up for non response and for data validation is conducted by telephone or e-mail in order to reach the survey target response rate (100% per month).

View the Questionnaire(s) and reporting guide(s) .

Error detection

Error detection is an integral part of both collection and data processing activities. Edits are applied to data records during collection to identify reporting and capture errors. These edits identify potential errors based on year-over-year changes in key variables, totals, and ratios that exceed tolerance thresholds, as well as identify problems in the consistency of collected data (e.g. a total variable does not equal the sum of its parts). During data processing, other edits are used to automatically detect errors or inconsistencies that remain in the data following collection. These edits include value edits (e.g. Value > 0, Value > -500, Value = 0), linear equality edits (e.g. Value1 + Value2 = Total Value), linear inequality edits (e.g. Value1 >= Value2), and equivalency edits (e.g. Value1 = Value2). When errors are found, they can be corrected using the failed edit follow up process during collection or via imputation. Extreme values are also flagged as outliers, using automated methods based on the distribution of the collected information. Following their detection, these values are reviewed in order to assess their reliability. Manual review of other units may lead to additional outliers identified. These outliers are excluded from use in the calculation of ratios and trends used for imputation, and during donor imputation. In general, every effort is made to minimize the non-sampling errors of omission, duplication, misclassification, reporting and processing.


When non-response occurs, when respondents do not completely answer the questionnaire, or when reported data are considered incorrect during the error detection steps, imputation is used to fill in the missing information and modify the incorrect information. Many methods of imputation may be used to complete a questionnaire, including manual changes made by an analyst. The automated, statistical techniques used to impute the missing data include: deterministic imputation, replacement using historical data (with a trend calculated, when appropriate), replacement using auxiliary information available from other sources, replacement based on known data relationships for the sample unit, and replacement using data from a similar unit in the sample (known as donor imputation). Usually, key variables are imputed first and are used as anchors in subsequent steps to impute other, related variables.


All units in the observed population are being surveyed. Estimation of totals is done by simple aggregation of the values of all estimation units that are found in the domain of estimation. Estimates are computed for several domains of estimation such as industrial groups and provinces/territories, based on the most recent classification information available for the estimation unit and the survey reference period. It should be noted that this classification information may differ from the original sampling classification since records may have changed in size, industry or location. Changes in classification are reflected immediately in the estimates.

Quality evaluation

In order to ensure the accuracy and consistency of the data such as the inter-provincial movements, imports and exports of natural gas and deliveries to final customers, the results of the survey are reconciled with other Statistics Canada energy survey such as the Survey on crude oil and natural gas (record number 2198). Other federal departments, provincial and territorial authorities routinely monitor the data.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects which could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

Micro data is only shared or disclosed to organizations with whom Statistics Canada has an official data sharing agreement in place. All company records are removed for any respondent who has written the Chief Statistician to object to the sharing of their data.

Respondents to this survey are defined as carriers or public utilities, in accordance with subsection 17(3) of the Statistics Act. Under paragraph 17(2)(g) of the Act, the Chief Statistician may, by order, authorize information relating to any carrier or public utility to be disclosed. If the Chief Statistician authorizes it, all tabular estimates may be released publically whether they disclose a business or not.

Revisions and seasonal adjustment

Revised data are incorporated into the database up to 24 months after the current reference month. Major revisions are incorporated as required, beyond these limits

Data accuracy

The survey is a census of the target population and the response rate is nearly 100%. As a consequence, under-coverage is minimal, and minimal bias resulting from non-response is introduced. If changes are received from respondents, the data are incorporated and the published data are revised.

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