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News that hits us like a big lump of coal: Gas prices up by as much as 30% this December

By Samantha Vercellino


As cold grips the Midwest in the opening days of December, we’re forced to welcome natural gas prices that are up to 30 percent higher.

Major Illinois utilities are charging consumers 13-30 percent more to heat their homes this December compared to last. Peoples Gas showed the biggest price jump of all, charging customers about 14 cents per therm more this December. Ameren customers face the smallest price hike–roughly 7 cents per therm more. (See our Natural Gas Price Checker.)

Why the increase? Temperatures remain cold around the Great Lakes, pushing up heating demand and prices, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the statistical arm of the Department of Energy.

But don’t let the higher natural gas prices ruin your holiday cheer. Use these simple tips to winterize your home and cut your utility bills, so you have more to spend this season.