U.S. heating costs forecast to be higher this winter: EIA

Reuters News
Posted: Oct 11, 2017 9:07 AM

(Reuters) - Most U.S. households can expect higher heating expenditures this winter than in the previous two years, according to the government's Winter Fuels Outlook due to be released at 11 a.m. (1500 GMT) on Wednesday.

The U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) said in a report the higher expected heating expenditures between October and March are the result of more demand for heating because of colder weather and, to a lesser extent, higher fuel prices.

EIA said it based its heating demand projections on the most recent temperature forecasts from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

NOAA forecast that the coming winter would be 13 percent colder than last winter and closer to the average of the previous 10 years.

EIA projected the average household will pay about $644 to heat a home this winter with natural gas, $980 with electricity, $1,462 with heating oil and $1,661 with propane.

In all cases, those costs are up from the prior two winters.

Natural gas is the most common heating fuel in every region except the South, where electric heating is more usual. The Northeast uses more heating oil than other regions, while propane is more prevalent in the Midwest.

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Paul Simao)