Duke Energy seeks regulatory review of natural gas rates

Company to increase costs to consumers.

Duke Energy Ohio announced Thursday it is requesting the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio review its natural gas rates, which it plans to increase.

The company says the regulatory review request is because of infrastructure improvements to enhance service to customers. Duke Energy Ohio is a natural gas service provider to more than 450,000 customers in nine counties in Ohio, including Butler, Warren and Hamilton counties.

It is also the main electric provider in these areas. The company is seeking approval to increase its current natural gas base rates by approximately $48.8 million.

“Under the company’s proposal, residential customers who use an average of 57 Ccf (100 cubic feet) per month will see a $6.08 — or 6.7% — increase on their monthly natural gas bills, from $90.14 to $96.22,” Duke officials said.

“This proposed increase will vary depending on the amount of natural gas a customer uses, a customer’s rate type and the prevailing cost of the natural gas commodity,” the company stated in a news release.

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Investments Duke has made that call for rate increases include the installation of new infrastructure, including natural gas pipelines, and safety and security improvements to enable a robust system for customers, the company said. It invested $1.4 billion in capital projects across Southwest since the last time it sought approval of a natural gas base rate increase, which was in 2012.

“One of these major infrastructure projects, the Central Corridor Pipeline, is now operational. The filing date for this rate review was determined in prior regulatory proceedings regarding the in-service date of the CCP.”

Other projects include:

- The 14-mile CCP project in Hamilton County which went into service in March

- The Winton Road Regulator Station, built in 2018-19 in College Hill. This brought regulator equipment above ground to keep water out of the vault containing Duke equipment

- The Line D pipeline project that involved the replacement of 3.5 miles of distribution line along Kellogg Avenue in Cincinnati in 2017.

Duke Energy Ohio’s application and supporting documentation can be found under Case No. 22-0507-GA-AIR on PUCO’s website.

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