Friday, January 15, 2010

Electric bills expected to fall slightly

Residents could see about a 50-cent to $1 reduction in their electric bills in February, depending on how much energy they use, the Tennessee Valley Authority has announced. Electricity charges — above the base rate — fluctuate what are generally small amounts each month, depending on TVA's fuel costs. Those have been dropping for a few months. TVA produces electricity for virtually all of Tennessee, and it is sold through distributors, including Nashville Electric Service. TVA also serves parts of six other states. The latest adjustment, the eighth drop in fuel costs in a row, will be applied to monthly billing beginning Feb. 1. Historically, the rate electricity users paid changed only when the base rate was increased or decreased from time to time. The reason for the recent reductions is that the amount of power generated at hydroelectric dams has been up, which lowered the need to use more costly resources, TVA said. Those other resources include coal, nuclear, natural gas. — ANNE PAINE THE TENNESSEAN

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