Liberty Utilities customers to see natural gas rates increase

(Source: Pexels/Pixabay)
(Source: Pexels/Pixabay)

(KBSI) – Liberty Utilities customers will see natural gas rates increase under a filing that takes effect on December 4.

The increase reflects estimated changes in the wholesale cost of natural gas as well as a change in the company’s Actual Cost Adjustment (ACA) factor, according to the Missouri Public Service Commission.

The ACA factor is a mechanism which tracks any over-collection or under-collection of actual natural gas costs over a 12 month period. The net over- or under-collected balances are either refunded or collected the next year.

Liberty Utilities’ ACA includes costs associated with the February 2021 Cold Weather Event (Winter Storm Uri) which had a significant impact on certain natural gas prices.

Last November, the Missouri Public Service Commission approved a request filed by Liberty Utilities extending the ACA
recovery period in the Northeast, West and Southeast Districts from 12 months to three years. That spreads the costs from the February 2021 Cold Weather Event over a longer period of time to mitigate the impact on customer bills.

Southeast District: Residential customers currently pay approximately $0.64 per Ccf of natural gas. Under this filing, the rate will increase to approximately $0.94 per Ccf. Liberty Utilities serves Southeast District customers in the Missouri counties of Butler, Cape Girardeau, Dunklin, Iron, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Ripley, Scott, Stoddard and Wayne.

The cost of natural gas from wholesale suppliers generally makes up about 50% to 55% of a customer’s total monthly natural gas bill. The wholesale cost of natural gas (the cost your local natural gas company must pay to its suppliers for natural gas) is not regulated by the Missouri Public Service Commission. The wellhead cost of natural gas is unregulated and is primarily driven by supply, demand and the weather. The Missouri Public Service Commission conducts an
annual regulatory review to ensure that regulated natural gas companies make prudent decisions in securing natural gas supplies for their customers.

What you can do to help manage your utility bill:

  • Add attic insulation if necessary.
  • Place weather stripping around doors, use plastic film covering and caulk windows to keep heat from escaping from your home.
  • Change or replace furnace filters each month when dirty.
  • Have your chimney checked for blockage.
  • Close fireplace dampers when the fireplace is not being used.
  • Have your heating system checked and tuned-up if needed.
  • Place an approved insulated cover-jacket around the hot water heater.
  • Consider getting professional help for any projects that are beyond your capabilities.
  • Contact your local utility company to ask about energy saving tips and programs.

Liberty Utilities serves about 52,500 natural gas customers in Missouri.

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