Highest natural gas price since 2010 drives up Pennsylvania residential energy bills | Pennsylvania

(The Center Square) – Natural gas prices are reaching levels not seen in more than a decade, and electricity bills are set to rise across the Commonwealth — albeit unevenly.

Spot prices for natural gas will reach $6.09 per million UK thermal units in the winter. corresponding the US Energy Information Administration, which is “the highest real price since the winter of 2009-10.”

For Pennsylvania households, this means many natural gas and electric companies will hike prices.

“As we approach the winter heating season, now is the time for consumers to consider ways to improve energy efficiency and energy conservation around their home or business,” the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission noted in a press release about price increases.

From December 1st, prices for electricity generation will increase at almost all electricity companies:

  • Citizens Electric, up to 12.2259 cents per kWh (31%).

  • Duquesne Light, up to 11.25 cents per kWh (20.2%).

  • Met-Ed, up to 10.303 cents per kWh (10%).

  • PECO, up to 9.855 cents per kWh (15.8%).

  • Penelec to 9.889 cents per kWh (-1%).

  • Penn Power, up to 10.511 cents per kWh (2%).

  • Pike Co. Light & Power, 1 PTC not finalized – currently at 12.8994 cents per kWh.

  • PPL, up to 14.612 cents per kWh (18%).

  • UGI Electric, no PTC change on Dec. 1 from current 12.903 cents per kWh.

  • Wellsboro Electric, up to 12.816 cents per kWh (34%).

  • West Penn Power, up to 8.517 cents per kWh (3%).

Duquesne Light and PECO cover Pittsburgh and Philadelphia respectively.

However, the increases are not 1:1 price increases. The price increase impacts the generation/utility fee on a Pennsylvanian’s electric bill, which is generally 40% to 60% of the total cost of a customer’s bill.

The situation is similar with natural gas prices. The price change will be 40% to 60% of a customer’s bill, but not all companies increase prices:

  • Columbia Gas from PA, up to $0.7457 per therm (128%).

  • National Fuel Gas, down to $0.8778 per cubic foot (-2.9%).

  • PECO at $0.8179 per cubic foot (-2%).

  • People’s Natural Gas Co. to $8.1342 per McF (-6.6%).

  • Peoples Gas Co. LLC to $8.1342 per McF (-6.6%).

  • Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW) at $0.8999 per cubic foot (-4.2%).

  • UGI Utilities, up to $0.86063 per Ccf (1%).

  • Valley Energy, up to $0.82047 per ccf (96.5%).

Columbia Gas serves 442,000 customers in western Pennsylvania and along the Maryland border, while Valley Energy serves approximately 9,000 customers in Bradford County and New York.

These price increases follow other price increases throughout the summer, such as The Center Square previously reported.

The PUC encourages customers to reduce energy use to lower their bills and compare utilities for lower rates PA Power Switch and PAGasSwitch. Assistance programs are also available for Pennsylvanians who are struggling to pay their bills by contacting their utility provider.

“Public utilities are the first and most direct mechanisms for connecting homes in distress to much-needed assistance. Utility companies understand the assistance programs that are available in their communities for income-eligible consumers,” the PUC noted.

Natural gas production in Pennsylvania has been steadily increasing since 2018, pushing impact fees paid to the state to $275 million, the highest on record, according to The Center Square previously reported. However, ongoing problems from the pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have pushed up energy prices.

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