Oklahoma businesses again get the best deal on electricity

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By Arthur Murray May 8th, 2019
For business

Oklahoma businesses again get the best deal on electricity

Once again, businesses in Oklahoma receive the best deal on electricity, according to the May Choose Energy Rate Report and Business Index, both compiled using the most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Commercial electricity rates were 7.49 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), the lowest among the 50 stages. Industrial rates were 5.03 cents/kWh – the nation’s second lowest price. The combined rate of 12.52 cents/kWh is less than 73 percent of the combined national average – 17.20 cents/kWh.

Compare that with Hawaii, which ranked 50th in the Index. The combined commercial/industrial rate there is 56.70 cents/kWh – nearly 230 percent more than the U.S. average.

Below are the states where businesses paid the lowest combined rates for business energy, their combined commercial and industrial rates, and the percentage of the U.S. combined average – 17.20 cents/kWh:

While Hawaii is an extreme case, other states also pay much more than the national average. Below are the next 10 states where businesses paid the highest rates, their combined commercial and industrial rates, and the percentage of the U.S. combined average:

How have business electricity rates changed since last year?

Overall, business electricity rates declined 0.9 percent from the same month last year. They fell in 26 states. The largest decline came in Maine, where the combined rate fell 13.7 percent.

Below are the 10 states where rates fell the most:

Rates increased by the largest percentage in South Carolina, where they were up 29.4 percent compared with the same month last year.

Below are the 10 states where rates increased by the greatest percentage:

How do states with lower business energy prices produce most of their power?

There’s no definitive answer among the top 20. The same number – eight – generated the largest percentage of their electricity from natural gas and coal. But four of the five states with the lowest combined rates, including No. 1 Oklahoma, generated the largest percentage of their electricity using natural gas.

Below are the 20 states with the lowest rates for business electricity, the largest source of that power, and the percentage generated by that source:

As for the states with the highest rates, Hawaii generates most of its electricity by burning petroleum. But no other state depends heavily on that source. Surprisingly, natural gas provides the largest source of electricity in 10 higher-priced states.

Below are the 20 states with the highest rates for business electricity, the largest source of that power, and the percentage generated by that source:

What about industrial natural gas prices?

In addition to electricity prices in general, natural gas prices are important for industrial customers. The lowest natural gas prices, according to the most recent data from EIA, are in Idaho, where they average $3.57 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Below are the states with the lowest rates, in dollars per 1,000 cubic feet, for industrial users:

As for the most expensive, Hawaii again finish first. Here are the states with the highest rates for industrial users:

For complete commercial rates by state, see the Choose Energy® Electricity Rates by State page. For more on business rates, see the Choose Energy® Business Energy Index. And for more information on various sources of power in each state, including natural gas, see the Choose Energy® Data Center.

Arthur directs ChooseEnergy.com’s newsroom, taking advantage of nearly 30 years of newspaper and magazine experience. A native of Virginia, Arthur attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism.