Electric Bill Reductions Coming

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The price of household electricity should retreat in July, as much of the sharp increase in natural gas supply that drove up rates in January has corrected.

Eversource announced that its residential customers will see the supply portion of their bill nearly halve, dropping from the current 24.17 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) to 13.82 cents. That is still higher than the 12.19 cents paid by customers last summer.

The company does not make money on the cost of energy supply. Customers are charged based on what Eversource pays generators who produce power. Last year, the company said prices surged due to increased global demand, world events (the war in Ukraine), and extreme weather.

The supply price changes twice a year, on January 1 and July 1. The Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) has little say on the cost of supply, other than to confirm that the energy was bought competitively.

Delivery increase proposed

PURA does have a say on the delivery portion of electric bills, which Eversource proposes to increase on July 1. The company asks to raise the delivery charge by roughly 20 percent, from 11.751 cents per kilowatt-hour to 14.107 cents.

Eversource says the increase in the delivery rate “is primarily due to the expiration of a roughly $12 a month credit on customers’ bills that went into effect in January to ease the burden of high energy costs.”

If the new delivery rate is approved, according to Eversource, the average customer using its standard service would still see a $56 reduction in their monthly electric bill, given the supply-side reduction. The company says the average customer uses 700 kWh per month, but notes that a customer’s actual bill depends on how much energy is used, their rate category, and weather conditions.

Continuing volatility

The company noted that Connecticut customers use 35 percent more electricity during the summer months. “That’s why we continue to urge everyone to take advantage now of the many energy efficiency and payment programs that we offer before the hot weather arrives,” said Steve Sullivan, Eversource’s president of Electric Operations in Connecticut.

Customers should also expect higher supply costs in the winter, as the energy market remains volatile.

“The energy market and international factors continue to affect the cost of natural gas,” said Mr. Sullivan, “and those impacts are still being felt by our Connecticut customers. This is a good time to think about your energy usage and plan for the likely increases we’ll still experience.”

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