PUC voices concerns over rising winter natural gas prices and seeks ways to limit customer bill impacts

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DENVER (December 22, 2021) — The Public Utilities Commission (PUC), part of the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), in November requested that utilities provide data that about potential increases to consumers’ bills due to national and global gas commodity price increases, effects of Winter Storm Uri cost recovery schedules, and other requests for rate increases.

The PUC has voiced its concerns over natural gas commodity pricing in recent weekly meetings and has gathered enough information from utilities to better understand the impacts to consumers that are likely to be seen this heating season. Across the country, natural gas commodity prices have risen during the economic recovery, and this is the primary factor affecting consumer heating bills. Therefore, despite mild winter weather curbing demand, prices are still substantially higher than this time last year.

All gas utility customers are likely to see energy conservation notices this heating season, as well as subsequent heating seasons. While these conservation notices may assist individual customers with mitigating their own costs, the PUC will also seek to explore opportunities to understand and potentially expand hedging (a means of price protection), phase bill impacts over time where appropriate, and top off low-income support programs.

A full set of responses from utilities can be found via the PUC’s E-Filings system, searching for proceeding number 21M-0521G. Additionally, the PUC and utilities are encouraging energy efficiency practices this heating season to lower the overall impact to your monthly bills.

Customers who may qualify for low-income energy assistance programs or weatherization programs should explore their ability to get energy assistance, and visit the PUC’s website to learn more about how you can save on your utility bills. The “Utility Assistance Resources” section contains links to each utility’s energy and bill assistance programs, which can also include payment arrangements for both low-income and non-low-income customers and also offers energy efficiency tips.


About PUC

The Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) serves the public interest by effectively regulating utilities and facilities so that the people of Colorado receive safe, reliable, and reasonably-priced services consistent with the economic, environmental and social values of our state.

About DORA

The Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) is dedicated to preserving the integrity of the marketplace and is committed to promoting a fair and competitive business environment in Colorado. Consumer protection is our mission. Visit dora.colorado.gov for more information or call 303-894-7855/toll free 1-800-886-7675.