Dominion Energy bills increase due to rising fuel costs

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 6:38 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 19, 2022 at 6:39 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - On Friday, the State Corporation Commission (SCC) approved a fuel cost increase for Dominion Energy of about $14.93 for the next three years due to a rise in the cost of natural gas.

This increase has already appeared on your bill since July, but Dominion said it’s likely at an increase of $9 as they’ve tried to cut costs on your account elsewhere.

Dominion Energy uses natural gas to create electricity. It’s a resource that generates nearly 40 percent of the country’s power.

Craig Carper, a spokesperson for Dominion Energy, told 12 On Your Side the fuel increase is due to the ripple effects of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

Dominion projects natural gas will cost more than $1 billion than what it used to be.

“While we’ve seen gasoline go down in the last month or so, natural gas actually peeked in August, so these different fuel sources will see similar trends, but natural gas has not yet come down,” Carper said.

To offset the cost, the energy company is increasing its fuel cost on your bill.

The fuel rate is the portion of the electric bill that pays for the fuel used to generate electricity and costs associated with power purchased by the utility company to serve its customers.

In its final order, the Commission stated: “the Commission notes its awareness of the ongoing rise in gas prices, inflation, and other economic pressures that are impacting all utility customers. We are sensitive to the effects of rate increases, especially in times such as these. The Commission, however, must follow the laws applicable to this case, as well as the findings of fact supported by the evidence in the record. This is what we have done herein.”

The state approved the rate hikes for the next three years, but it’s always subject to change yearly.

“This could have gone up to 24 bucks a month, but by spreading that over three years, we were able to bring the customer’s impact low as we possibly could,” Carper said. “That said, in a year, we will file adjustments again, so there could be fluctuation.”

The energy company said as we head into these cooler months, customers should see bills begin to go down as we rely less on AC and heat.

In the meantime, Dominion said, now is an excellent time to make sure your home is insulated well and that your HVAC system is working properly ahead of winter.

This can help cut down on the costs of you your bill.

Dominion also has programs like budget billing in which you pay the same amount each month rather than watching your costs go up each and every month.