Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Business

January 17, 2014

Winter heating season reaches halfway point

INDIANAPOLIS – Now two and a half months in to the winter heating season of November through March, colder-than-normal temperatures could cause Vectren Energy Delivery of Indiana - North (Vectren) customers to see higher natural gas bills than this time last year.

Today, the utility reminded customers that November 2013 temperatures were about 15 percent colder than normal and 10 percent colder than those experienced in November 2012, while December 2013 temperatures were 5 percent colder than normal, yet 30 percent colder than the prior year. Thus far, January has been 13 percent colder than normal and 32 percent colder than January 2013.

“Given November and December have been colder than normal and gas costs are modestly higher than last year, customers have likely experienced increases in bills when compared to last year,” said Mike Roeder, president of Vectren Energy Delivery of Indiana - North. “Although January is certainly off to a colder than normal start, and therefore, customers are likely using more gas to heat their homes and/or businesses, bills will still be about 35 percent lower than those we experienced in early 2009 thanks to relatively low and stable natural gas costs.”

In October, Vectren projected the average customer would pay a total of $530 for November through March for natural gas service, which reflected slightly higher gas prices and normal weather. Through the first two months of the heating season, that same customer has paid between $200-$210; whereas last year during the same time period, the average customer paid between $170-$180. Bills vary by customer depending on the size and age of the home, number of gas appliances, number in the household, thermostat settings and levels of insulation.

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