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Expect to pay more to heat this winter

The coming winter will be both colder and costlier.

That’s the forecast of the Energy Information Administration, which Thursday issued its short-term energy and winter fuels outlook.

“Forecast average household expenditures for heating oil, propane, and natural gas are 38 percent. 26 percent, and 22 percent higher than last year, respectively, because of higher expected demand and higher fuel prices” the EIA said.

The good news is that government weather forecasters predict temperatures will be 3 percent warmer than the previous 10-year average. The bad news, it’ll be colder than last year, which was an aberration because it was 15 percent warmer than the 10-year average.

Temperatures this winter . . . are expected to be much colder than last winter east of the Rocky Mountains, with the Northeast and Midwest 17 percent colder and the South 18 percent colder. Energy Information Administration in its winter-fuels outlook

Prices for the three main sources of winter heating are not far off of last year’s low levels, but consumers are expected to spend more than last year because the unseasonable warmth meant less spent on home heating.

Roughly half of U.S. households heat with natural gas, and those prices are expected to be 11 percent higher than last winter, with consumption of natural gas for heating forecast to be about 10 percent higher than last winter. It’ll cost more, and the nation is expected to consume more.

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