This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

October 08, 2003

EIA Cautiously Optimistic About Heating Costs this Winter

DOE's Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its Short-Term Energy Outlook on October 7th, and the outlook for U.S. fuel prices this winter is good if the weather is normal. But with the supply situation remaining tight, a colder-than-normal winter would present a substantial risk of higher fuel prices.

U.S. heating fuel inventories are on track to reach normal or near-normal levels by the end of October, a substantial improvement from the end of last winter, when natural gas inventories reached record lows. Based on these inventories, the EIA projects that those using heating oil will see an 8 percent decrease in heating costs this winter (compared to last winter), while homes heated with natural gas, propane, and electricity will see increases of 5 percent, 3 percent, and 2 percent, respectively. See the EIA press release, or go directly to the Short-Term Energy Outlook.