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Home Heating Costs May Soar This Winter

Energy

By Vince Conti

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) issued its predictions for the cost of home heating fuels this winter, and nobody is going to like them.  

The EIA Winter Fuels Outlook projects significant increases in home heating costs, regardless of the fuels a home uses. 

The report notes that the nation is approaching winter with retail prices of energy at or near multiyear highs due to changes in the energy supply and demand patterns in response to the global pandemic. 

The bad news by type of fuel: 

  • Homes heating with natural gas may see increases of up to 30% over what was spent last year. 

  • Those relying on propane could experience a hike of as much as 54%. 

  • Heating oil-fueled homes could see a rise of as much as 43% over last year’s total. 

  • Homes that heat with electricity are projected to spend 6% more. 

The report acknowledges there will be regional variation, but throughout the report, the Northeast is often at the higher rather than lower end of the variation. 

Adding to the dismal outlook is the fact that a forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting an increase in the average number of heating days. 

Put together, the forecasts are envisioning a longer, colder winter, with more days for which home heating will be necessary and with significantly higher costs for all home heating alternatives.  

To add insult to injury, the report notes that even if there’s a 10% warmer winter, the average cost of heating homes will still be higher than last year. 

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