Monthly natural gas price to go up in February; utility says increase is temporary

Dominion Energy Ohio’s monthly natural gas price for residential customers who are on the Standard Choice Offer is going up for February, but the utility said forecasts show the increase is temporary.

Short-term prices have temporarily surged with the cold weather, but extended forecasts indicate a return to prices below $3 per thousand cubic feet later this year, the utility said.

The utility also said it has ample supply of stored natural gas.

Effective Feb. 14, the SCO will be $3.63 per thousand cubic feet (mcf). That’s 89 cents/mcf or 32 percent higher than the January rate or $2.74. It is 29 cents/mcf or 8.7 percent higher than the price a year ago, but still 13.5 cents or 3.6 percent lower than the five-year February average of $3.77/mcf.

The average customer’s bill for the month of February would be $97.82, up $5.32, or 5.8 percent, from $92.50 in February 2017.

All customers pay a fixed $27.71 for the basic monthly charge, a usage-based charge, to transport the gas to your home, and gross-receipts tax. That usage-based charge is currently 32 cents/mcf.

Consumer columnist Betty Lin-Fisher continues to recommend the SCO. Go to http://www.ohio.com/betty to see a step-by-step guide.

Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or blinfisher@thebeaconjournal.com. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at http://www.ohio.com/betty

Ohio Gas Association