BOSTON (WHDH) - National Grid customers could be in for quite the shock when they open their utility bills this winter.
The company has announced its winter rates, which go into effect on Nov. 1, stating that residential customers that use electricity can expect a price increase of 64%.
That means if you paid the typical $179 a month last winter, be ready for a monthly bill of at least $293. And it is not just an electric shock, either: customers who use gas will also feel a 22-24% price hike.
“At National Grid, this is the highest we’ve experienced,” said National Grid Chief Customer Officer Helen Burt. “Our customers pay what we pay. We’ve kept our electric distribution and transportation piece of the bill flat, year-over-year, and so this is entirely due to the cost of energy in the marketplace now.
Eversource is also predicting its gas customers will see their bills rise anywhere from 25% to 38%.
The massive price increases are reportedly due to natural gas production dropping during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the war in Ukraine, both straining production.
“Really, (customers) need to reach out to legislators to push for A, more renewables, more clean energy, and B, in the very short term, bill relief,” said Senior Policy Advocate Kyle Murray of the Acadia Center.
Murray said electric and gas customers can take back control by changing the way they get and use energy.
“(At) next to no cost to you, you can have contractors come into your home, upgrade your energy efficiency and, in some cases, cut your bills in half,” he said.
Murray added that price hikes like the ones slated for this winter also make it important to shop around for the best rate when possible.
“Often times, a city or town will run a community solar program and you can buy into that program on the consumer, so it takes no changes to your home – they just sell you the energy that is being produced,” Murray explained.
“We’re going to work with our customers in every way whatsoever to make this as easy as possible,” said Burt.
Additional tips on cutting costs and changing energy consumption habits can be found here.
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