The American Gas Association is out with their winter fuel outlook report. Vice President of Policy Analysis Chris McGill says they take into consideration supply, demand, temperature, weather events and pipeline capacity to calculate their outlook.
McGill says domestic natural gas supplies are at an all-time high so there is no fear of a shortage during the cold winter months. He says demand is also up for not only home heating but for electric generation, industrial use and for transportation.
McGill says heating systems had to work overtime last winter due to the polar vortex that caused a deep freeze event for an extended period of time. That is not in the 2014-15 winter outlook and forecasters say it will be a more normal winter an that will also help keep heating bills in check.
McGill says taking all factors into consideration consumers can expect a 7% increase in their winter heating bills compared to last year. He says right now on a national basis it is $4 per-million BTU’s, which is a sustainable number. McGill says that number could be relatively stable going forward the next several years.