CHARLESTON, W.Va. — No big increases are in the forecast for natural gas during the coming winter months. Price stability is the main theme of the Winter Fuel Outlook from the American Gas Association.
“People are cutting back on their production, but there’s still so much gas in the system, ready to be produced, that prices will continue to be among the lowest they’ve been in over a decade,” said Bruce McDowell, AGA managing director of policy analysis.
At this point, McDowell said it looks like any increases to natural gas bills will be small.
“Beyond the gas itself, that only makes up about half of the cost and then there’s the cost to deliver that gas which is the other half and those costs are not rising tremendously, but they are rising with inflation,” he recently told MetroNews.
According to the AGA, last winter’s natural gas prices were the lowest in more than a decade and capped four consecutive years of prices declines. The average residential customer paid $500 less for natural gas in all of last year compared with the 2008 rates.
McDowell said new sources of natural gas mean domestic natural gas supplies are at an all-time high and the U.S. is the leading producer of that natural gas globally. “We’re actually looking at exporting some of our gas because we have so much of it,” said McDowell.
The American Gas Association represents more than 200 natural gas companies.