Contact Us

Natural Gas Fees Charged by Northwestern Energy Likely to Rise After Public Service Commission Approval

Compressed Natural Gas
Photo courtesy of darinrmcclure/Flickr

Montana’s Public Service Commission (PSC) is currently re-assessing the fees charged for transport of natural gas by Northwestern Energy. The adjustments could have a financial impact on many Northwestern Energy users.

Northwestern Energy wants a $15.7 million increase in the fees it is allowed to charge and the PSC came very close to that figure last month when it created a temporary interim fee of $13.2 million.

However, PSC Vice Chair Bob Lake says Northwestern Energy will likely not get the full amount requested.

“It will be a little bit higher,” said Lake. “It will not be as high as the interim allowed. The interim allowed about $13.5 million and I think the settlement here comes in at about $10.5 million.”

Lake says natural gas rates will likely rise, but they are historically low.

“About ten or maybe twelve years ago, if your memory is running good, you’ll remember that natural gas was about an average cost of $100, $110. Today they are about $81. With this latest increase they may go to $85.”

The Public Service commission is set to make its final decision sometime in the next six weeks. The PSC typically reassesses about every five years as unforeseen market forces impact the heavily regulated utilities.

Some of the reasons for the increased fees include the need for Northwestern Energy to invest money into infrastructure to transport natural gas. Other cost impacts include new federal regulations.

Bob Lake:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of News Talk KGVO

Recommended for You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KGVO Club VIP quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KGVO Club VIP contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.