Governor Andrew Cuomo’s bad policy decisions on pipelines and fracking in New York are causing northeast gas prices to skyrocket.
Natural gas prices in some parts of the Northeast increased by 60 to 70 times their recent rates because there is insufficient pipeline capacity in the region during periods of high demand spurred by cold weather. The recent cold weather system stressed the market as much as the polar vortex of 2014. Natural gas is increasingly being used in the Northeast for both heat and electricity, providing over half of the electricity in the region.
To make matters worse, the region has shuttered coal-fired and nuclear power plants that provide reliable power. Due to bad policy, annual residential electricity rates in the Northeast average about 19 or 20 cents per kilowatt hour, compared with the national average of 12 to 13 cents. But due to the cold front experienced during the first week of January along with the so-called bomb cyclone, electricity prices rose 126 percent to $273.23 a megawatt-hour and natural gas prices rose to $87.47 per million British thermal unit on January 4.