… Falling supply prices mean consumers will pay less …
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun
4:41 PM EDT, October 28, 2010
Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. customers will likely save $16 per month on electricity starting next summer as falling energy prices push rates to their lowest point in several years.
BGE, which plans to officially announce the figures Friday, has locked in most of its supply for the 12-month period beginning next June. It estimates that typical homeowners will pay a total of $192 less for the year than they’re shelling out for the current year, and $340 less than they did during the peak two years ago.
The utility, which has 1.1 million residential customers, said wholesale electric prices have dropped in large part because of declining costs for natural gas.
“That’s the No. 1 factor,” said Mark Case, BGE’s senior vice president for regulatory affairs.
More natural-gas supply has helped drive down prices. Less demand for power — resulting from energy-efficiency improvements and a rough economy — is also playing a role.
Maryland’s Public Service Commission must sign off on BGE’s electricity purchases, the most recent of which was made through an auction this week. That approval is expected Friday.
BGE projects that average residential customers will pay $129 a month for electricity from June 2011 through May 2012. That’s down 11 percent from the $145-a-month tab an average consumer is paying now.
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