SOURCE: Northwest Natural Gas Company

Northwest Natural Gas Company

August 31, 2012 15:09 ET

NW Natural Files for Rate Reduction in Washington

Natural Gas Rates Have Gone Down by About 35 Percent in the Past Four Years

PORTLAND, OR--(Marketwire - Aug 31, 2012) - Northwest Natural Gas Company, dba NW Natural (NYSE: NWN), has filed a request with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (WUTC) for a rate reduction for its customers.

If the request is approved as filed, Washington residential rates would be reduced by about 9 percent and commercial rates would be reduced by about 9.5 percent. A residential customer using 55 therms a month would see an average monthly bill decrease of $5.62. A commercial customer using 233 therms a month would see an average monthly bill decrease of $23.92.

"This reduction is in addition to the $4 million in gas cost savings that we passed back to Washington customers in their June bills," said Gregg Kantor, NW Natural President and CEO. "Part of the reason for the lower prices is the surge of new domestic gas supplies. Last winter was also much warmer than usual, which helped reduce demand and keep prices lower."

Each year, NW Natural and other local gas companies adjust their rates to reflect changes in wholesale natural gas prices. Over the last four years, rates for NW Natural Washington customers have decreased by about 35 percent.

This initial filing reflects gas purchases for the year beginning Nov. 1 as well as other small year-to-year changes, including a 0.3 percent increase for residential and commercial energy efficiency programs. The company will submit a final filing to the WUTC in late October. Those numbers may change slightly from the current filing as the company locks in additional supplies for the upcoming heating season.

About NW Natural
NW Natural (NYSE: NWN) is headquartered in Portland, Ore., and provides natural gas service to about 681,000 residential, commercial, and industrial customers in Oregon and Southwest Washington. It is the largest independent natural gas utility in the Pacific Northwest. Additional information is available at www.nwnatural.com.

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