Virtually All West Virginians will See an Increase in their Power Bills in the Coming Months
The Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved yet another rate increase for American Electric Power's subsidiary companies Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power. The power companies sought this rate increase to recoup monies they have expended on coal. In recent months, the cost of coal has risen precipitously. What does this mean for the average consumer? A $7.33 average monthly bill increase.
Unfortunately, rising power costs are a sign of the times. Each and every one of us has felt the pain of refueling our vehicles. Gas now hovers at over $4.00 per gallon and will likely go up from there. Now consumers are getting hit at their homes.
There are many complex reasons for the rising costs. However, it can be boiled down to basic economics - increased demand for raw energy sources (coal, oil, etc) leads to rising overall energy costs.
I don't pretend to be an expert on energy policy or how to fix this problem. However, pure common sense dictates that the cost of energy will continue to rise and the only thing that we as consumers can do to combat this problem is to be more economical in our consumption of energy. Like many things in life, the shift to conservation will be difficult and a long process but with a little commitment and even little changes (turn the AC from 70 to 72 in the Summer, etc) we can collectively make an impact.