Consumers Energy starting to charge “summer peak rate” this summer
Company said rate increase to pay for more expensive electricity
JACKSON, Mich. (WILX) - Consumers Energy is implementing a “summer peak rate” from June 1 until September 30. It will charge 1.5 times the normal rate for electricity from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday - Friday during this time.
The company said they will use electric meters to keep track of when energy is being used.
“They’re raising their prices during the summer, that’s going to effect everybody the most,” said Brett Chamberlain, Consumers Energy customer. “People are running the most electricity during that time. So they are being compensated for that energy they are producing.”
Consumers Energy spokesman Brian Wheeler said it costs more to make sure everyone still has power during these times.
“You have to build more power plants to accommodate those peaks, those increases when it comes to energy usage,” said Wheeler.
The company is sending letters to customers explaining the change with how much more their bill would be if they didn’t change a thing. Wheeler said in most cases, it’s about a $2 a month increase.
The letter also encourages people to shift their energy usage like running the dishwasher later and raising the thermostat a couple degrees.
“Some people, when they take those steps, they will still be safe and comfortable in their homes, and they will hopefully see their energy bills go down,” said Wheeler.
Chamberlin said he’d also like Consumers to lower rates in the spring and fall.
“Generally in the fall and spring, it’s pretty mild here in Michigan. I think if they are just trying to raise the rates during the summer, it’s not very fair to the customer,” he said.
Consumers Energy said it’s done similar programs with some of its costumers before. This is the first time it’s spread out to all residential customers.
If you need help paying your electric bill, you can call 211 or contact Consumers Energy.
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