Parts of the SouthCoast Will See Stunning Electric Rate Increase
As though steadily rising food and other costs aren't bad enough, many area residents will face a massive rate increase for electricity and possibly natural gas this fall.
National Grid, which provides electric and gas service to most of Rhode Island and a good portion of Massachusetts – including Brockton, Dighton, Fall River, Norton, Rehoboth, Seekonk, Somerset, Swansea, the Bridgewaters, and Westport – says electric rates will rise by an astonishing 64 percent.
The British-owned utility is also seeking approval from the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities for a 22 percent increase in natural gas rates.
The increase in electric rates takes effect on November 1, 2022.
In a press release, National Grid said, "In total, the monthly bill of a residential electric customer using 600 kWh will increase from $179 in the winter 2021-2022 season, to approximately $293 for the winter 2022-2023 season, or a 64 percent increase, driven by higher electric supply prices."
National Grid attributes the need for a significant increase to "global conflict, inflation, and high demand."
If approved, the proposed rate hike would increase natural gas prices by about $50 per month to $278, an increase of 22 percent.
National Grid has posted a Winter Customer Savings Initiative to its website to help customers to cope with and manage the sharp rate increase.
Boston's WCVB Channel 5 reported that Eversource, which provides electricity and gas to much of the Greater New Bedford area, plans to file requests for rate increases with the Department of Public Utilities in Mid-November. If approved, the rate hikes would take effect in January.