INCREASED POWER COST AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR OUR MEMBERS
Nationwide and globally wholesale power cost have risen sharply. In great part it is because of the significant rise in natural gas prices for fuel that generates a substantial portion of the nation’s electricity.
What This Means For Members: Effective May 1, 2022, the PCRF (Power Cost Recovery Factor) is .055¢. Coupled with the base per kWh rate of .06667¢, the total per kWh charge for those on Rate A, which covers most members, is .12167¢.
The PCRF is the adjustable factor used to recover power cost, and the charge goes up or down depending on the cost of power. These costs are not marked up by us and we do not make a profit and they are just a straight pass-thru.
To give you an idea power cost have risen 43% since March of 2020 to March 2022. Further, the change in cost since March 2021 has been 25%.
The Outlook: Unfortunately, The Energy Information Administration projects that costs will continue to increase though the summer. Further the EIA projects the average U.S residential price of electricity to reach 14.3¢ per kWh this summer. (**)
This is not good news for anyone. It is no surprise that we are all seeing higher prices for everything from gas to eggs. In addition to elevated power costs, WCEC is also paying more for poles, wire, meters, and the multitude of equipment that it takes to serve our members. But, despite it all, we are working hard to control costs where we can.
What Can You Do? Every kWh you purchase adds up on your bill. The simplest way to reduce the impact of the PCRF increase is to use less. In this case, conservation is king. There are many ways to do this without reducing comfort by using timers for water heaters and electronic thermostats to control your HVAC. Also, by installing smart power strips to cut power to electronics when they are not in use. And possibly air-drying clothing. Each family is different, but a few habit changes can truly make a difference.
Another way to avoid spiking bills is to adopt our Levelized Billing option to avoid billing peaks. You’ll be billed the average amount over your previous twelve-month history. Payments are made automatically from your bank account, and they will be close to the same amount each month, so it’s easier to budget. Anyone who has been a co-op member for at least a year and has a zero current balance is eligible for the plan.
Summary: Your cooperative is a community focused not-for-profit. We are driven to provide the most affordable and reliable electricity that we can. It is our mission every day, and it will remain in the forefront. We will not charge you more than is necessary.
** SOURCE: EIA Short-Term Energy Outlook (page 11) https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/steo/