April 28, 2017
Filing calls for continued electricity & gas infrastructure investment to enhance network reliability, storm resiliency, customer service
Plan supports regional economic growth, integration of clean energy technologies
After more than a decade of stable energy bills and $6 billion in infrastructure investments, National Grid today filed a proposal to reset electricity and natural gas delivery prices beginning in April 2018. The new delivery prices will allow the company to modernize its electricity and gas networks to further enhance reliability and resiliency, improve customer service – including programs to assist the most vulnerable customers – and promote economic growth.
The proposal must be reviewed by the New York Public Service Commission and, if approved, would take effect April 1, 2018. The current delivery price freeze for National Grid’s upstate electricity and natural gas customers will remain in effect through March 31, 2018. Adjusted for inflation natural gas delivery prices have held steady for more than a decade and electricity delivery prices are lower than they were in 2004.
Today’s proposal would result in total monthly bill impacts of $11.23, or 13.9 percent (21.8 percent on delivery) for a residential electricity customer using 600 kilowatt-hours. Total bill impacts for residential gas customers would be $10.38, or 14.9 percent (24.8 percent on delivery) a month, based on 77 therms used.
While regulations require the company to file a one-year plan, National Grid is open to phasing in new rates through a multi-year agreement to mitigate customer impact. Spreading the increase over three years, for example, could reduce the first year customer bill impacts by more than half. The company’s filing would impact only energy delivery prices. Supply prices are set by the market, not National Grid.
“After more than a decade of rate stability, we fully understand the near term bill impact of this proposal on our customers and will look to phase in that impact while providing enhanced energy efficiency programs and bill management tools, and significantly increasing our support for our most vulnerable low-income customers,” said Ken Daly, National Grid’s New York president. “The proposal is focused on efficiently delivering the investments needed for the long term to achieve our primary object – the safe and reliable delivery of energy for our customers. This includes preparing for and responding to severe storms, which are increasing in both frequency and intensity. It also will allow us to lay the foundation for a sustainable and clean energy future by developing networks capable of serving the next generation of customers.”
As part of the request for new delivery prices, the company is proposing:
Since 2008, National Grid has increased its annual capital investment in its electricity networks by 70 percent and for its gas systems by 110 percent. During that same period, overall customer bills have declined and delivery prices have remained stable when adjusted for inflation.
The company also has maintained and enhanced its extensive energy efficiency and low-income assistance programs that help consumers manage energy usage and bills and take advantage of new energy technologies.
National Grid’s electricity business serves 1.6 million customers in more than 450 cities and towns across 24,000 square miles. The gas distribution business serves more than 600,000 customers across portions of central, northern and eastern New York.
Under New York public service law, rate cases are an 11-month process that will include a number of opportunities for public input. As part of its preparation for this case, National Grid conducted extensive outreach with more than 250 key stakeholders who represent different types of customers and other interest groups. This was done to help the company align its goals with those of the customers and communities it serves.
About National Grid
National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE: NGG) is an electricity and natural gas delivery company that connects nearly 7 million customers to vital energy sources through its networks in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the Northeast. National Grid also operates the systems that deliver gas and electricity across Great Britain.
Through its U.S. Connect21 strategy, National Grid is transforming its electricity and natural gas networks to support the 21st century digital economy with smarter, cleaner, and more resilient energy solutions. Connect21 is vital to our communities' long-term economic and environmental health and aligns with regulatory initiatives in New York (REV: Reforming the Energy Vision) and Massachusetts (Grid Modernization).