(November 4, 2020)
Citing higher natural gas prices, Xcel Energy is preparing to increase monthly bills for its Texas customers. According to a filing with the Public Utilities Commission, the company plans to hike the price of a typical 1,000 kilowatt-hour bill by $6.29, or about 6 percent, in November.
Xcel Energy is stressing that the price increase will only be temporary, and that energy costs overall have been declining in recent years.
“Abnormally low natural gas prices and new supplies of low-cost wind energy have combined to lower electric bills over the last two years, but now natural gas prices are on the upswing,” explained David Hudson, president of Xcel Energy – Texas. “The good news is our Sagamore Wind Project in New Mexico is nearing completion and the savings it will deliver after the first of the year should bring fuel costs down once again.”
About half of the energy supplied by Xcel Energy to the region comes from coal and natural gas. But the company says it is embracing new technologies, like the Sagamore wind project, to permanently reduce its exposure to natural gas price fluctuations.
Xcel’s push towards renewables is part of the utility’s pledge to achieve zero carbon emissions across its operations by 2050. The company, which serves around 3.6 million customers in eight states including Texas, is also committed to slashing its emissions by 80 percent by 2030.