NW Natural Requests Rate Increase

The Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) is hosting a virtual public comment hearing on Thursday, March 10, 2022 at 6 p.m. PST. The event provides NW Natural customers an opportunity to speak directly to the Commissioners about the utility’s proposed increase to natural gas rates.

NW Natural is asking for an increase in its general rates of approximately $73.5 million or 9.9 percent. In its filing NW Natural also requests recovery of other costs, including its Lexington renewable natural gas project. Together, NW Natural is seeking a total rate increase of $81.8 million or 11.05 percent. For a residential customer using an average of 52.5 therms per month, these combined adjustments would lead to a monthly bill increase of $7.42, effective November 1, 2022.

NW Natural identifies several factors driving the proposed rate increase, including modernizing its information technology systems, relocating its regional resource centers to be more seismically secure, and continuing projects to reinforce its distribution system and maintain its storage operations. 

NW Natural’s general rate change request is undergoing a nearly year-long review and will be fully investigated on behalf of natural gas customers by the PUC, the Oregon Citizens’ Utility Board, the Alliance of Western Energy Consumers, and others. This public comment hearing is part of that investigation, which will conclude in October when the Commissioners rule on the request. New rates, if approved, are expected to go into effect November 1, 2022. 

Ways to Comment

NW Natural customers and other interested persons may participate in the public comment hearing to provide verbal comments to the Commissioners and the Administrative Law Judge presiding over this rate case. 

When: Thursday, March 10, 2022 from 6 – 7 p.m. 

For those unable to participate during the virtual public comment hearing, comments may be submitted by March 31, 2022 in the following ways:

  • By email to PUC.PublicComments@puc.oregon.gov
  • By calling 503-378-6600 or 800-522-2404 (all relay calls accepted)
  • By mail to Oregon Public Utility Commission, Attn: AHD – UG 435, PO Box 1088, Salem, OR 97308-1088

To stay informed throughout this rate case process, individuals may request to be added to the distribution list to receive publicly available documents. Submit requests by email to puc.hearings@puc.oregon.gov or by calling 503-378-6678.

The PUC’s mission is to ensure that customers of Oregon’s investor-owned utilities have access to safe, reliable, and high quality utility services at just and reasonable rates. 

Source: NW Natural

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