November 17, 2022
Consumer Alert: Eversource and United Illuminating File New and Increasing Supply Rates with PURA
for January 1, 2023 – June 30, 2023
Standard Service Electricity Price Increase Overview
Pending approval by the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA), based on filings by The Connecticut Light and Power Company, d/b/a Eversource Energy (“Eversource”) and the United Illuminating Company today, the supply portion of electric bills for customers paying the Standard Service supply rate is scheduled to increase on January 1, 2023, as follows:
CL&P/Eversource Fixed Standard Service Residential Rate
(Per kWh of customer usage)
United Illuminating Fixed Standard Service Residential Rate
(Per kWh of customer usage)
The scheduled increase will affect Connecticut customers of Eversource and United Illuminating who have their electricity supplied directly from Eversource or UI, as opposed to from a third-party supplier.
The main reason for the supply rate increase is the global impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has caused higher prices for oil and natural gas globally and here in the U.S. Connecticut, like all New England states, is heavily reliant on natural gas for electricity, and, therefore, when the market price of natural gas increases, supply rates also increase.
Information is provided below on how consumers can seek financial assistance with electric and heating bills, third party supplier information, and energy conservation and efficiency programs that can help reduce bills.
The supply rates are directly affected by the natural gas market price, which is the fuel used to generate the majority of Connecticut’s electricity. When the market price of natural gas increases, supply rates also increase.
The oil/natural gas markets are global, and the market price of natural gas is affected by many factors. Russia’s war in Ukraine has created volatile energy markets and is putting upward pressure on oil and natural gas prices. Even though the United States only imports a small amount from Eastern Europe, the disruptions are affecting prices worldwide, including in the United States and particularly in New England, where we still rely heavily on natural gas and on Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), which has been in higher demand in Europe resulting in significant increases to the price of LNG, which sets the market price. These factors have impacted Connecticut’s procurements this summer and fall, despite Connecticut’s proactive procurement practices and efforts to insulate against natural gas price volatility.
Below is a chart showing rate changes in standard service over the last five years:
The standard service rate is a pass-through rate, meaning the money you pay to your regulated electric distribution company is passed on directly to the supplier from whom they purchase the electricity you use. Eversource and United Illuminating do not derive any profits from the Standard Service rate.
Connecticut is a deregulated state when it comes to energy supply. This means that you do not have to purchase energy from the local utilities, and instead can opt to sign up with a 3rd party electric supplier.
Consumers often look to mitigate the impacts of the higher-than-normal utility standard service rates by participating in the 3rd party electric supplier market. This however comes with its own risks. OCC recognizes the short- term savings opportunities that third party suppliers may offer and cautions customers to be vigilant when purchasing electricity from a 3rd party supplier.
If you need assistance paying your utility bill both Eversource and UI offer bill assistance options to help:
1 CEAP is a federally funded program that provides winter heating assistance to more than 75,000 income-eligible households every year. Families may also be eligible for matching payment plans, protection from shutoffs, and replacement or repairs for heating equipment and water heaters. Both homeowners and renters are eligible, and assistance is available for natural gas and electric heat, as well as deliverable fuels like oil and propane.
The CEAP is administered through the Department of Social Services (DSS) and local Community Action Agencies (CAAs) across the state. In addition to applying online at ct.gov/heatinghelp/apply, residents can also contact their local CAA with additional questions or to apply for assistance in-person or over the phone. (Click here to find CAA contact information.)
Operation Fuel Assistance – Operation Fuel provides emergency energy and utility assistance to households in Connecticut facing financial crisis. Call (860) 243-2345 or visit https://operationfuel.org/gethelp/
OCC urges customers to use conservation measures to reduce energy use to the extent possible. Energy efficiency measures can be one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to reduce energy costs for consumers.
Homes that participate in energy efficiency programs see an average of
$200-250 dollars in savings on their annual energy bills, and more if they install additional measures such as insulation.
Customers can visit https://energizect.com/resources-for/sf-homeowners to explore potential energy efficiency and renewable energy measures that may help lower your electricity usage.
Public Utilities Regulatory Authority
10 Franklin Square
New Britain, CT 06051