Natural gas prices on the rise, Black Hills Energy warns of higher energy bills

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 7:45 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Many homeowners in Lincoln may have noticed an increase on natural gas bills and it may only be the beginning of a long winter ahead.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, households that heat primarily with natural gas should expect to spend at least 30-percent more than last winter. Rising natural gas prices and growing demand are the two main reasons behind the spike Nebraskans will see on their monthly bill.

“We need to plan for higher heating bills going into the winter because of the commodity cost increase,” Brandy Johnson with Black Hills Energy said, “The best way to plan for that is to focus on the energy that they’re using in their homes and look for ways to save energy.”

Despite the drastic rising costs of natural gas, Black Hills Energy does have tips to keep energy bills as low as possible.

The easiest and most efficient way is to weather-strip windows and doors, where nearly 12-percent of heat loss happens. Some other ways to reduce wasted energy are sealing cracks, changing filters or even installing a programmable thermostat so the heat isn’t turned on and off throughout the day.

Black Hills Energy also offers a budget billing payment plan to make payments less volatile.

“Natural gas is the largest piece of our customers bill and it’s a pass through cost for us,” Johnson said, “We want to make sure that customers are expecting higher energy bills going into the winter, they’re planning their budgets and looking for ways to save energy.”

An especially colder winter, like the winter in 2020-2021, could push natural gas bills even higher than already expected.

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