In spite of the heat now, it comes just in time for winter.
Rita and the heat may soon conspire to drive up energy costs even more in the city of Tallahassee. That is going to gobble more cash from your wallet.
David Byrne, Director of Energy Services, says, "Electric generation is pretty high. We've had hot weather recently and demand is strong for electricity, so a lot of natural gas is being used."
Byrne says that 95 percent of the electricity generated by the city comes from natural gas. We narrowly missed July's peak energy usage Monday, but Jeff McClellan says there's no shortage at all.
Jeff says, "We're getting close, but we're still doing fine. We have whatever we need to supply the city."
If Hurricane Rita hits the western Gulf oil rigs particularly hard, officials say there could be a reduced supply of fuel. This may exacerbate the expected increase in natural gas and electric prices starting on October 1.
David Byrne adds, "We're getting into a period where fuel costs are higher, higher and higher, and it's going to be reflected in electric and gas rates."
Byrne says this rate increase will last approximately six months, and the best way to keep the demand and your cost down is continued conservation.
Tallahassee officials say starting October 1, the utility rate increase will range from 13 to 14 percent for residential customers.
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