While prices at the pump have dropped quite a bit recently, that's not going to mean much, if any, relief on home heating bills this winter on Long Island.
A new report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts that those who use heating oil to keep their homes toasty will spend an average of 2 percent less this winter. That figure reflects a 5 percent decrease in prices, but a 3 percent increase in consumption as forecasters are predicting a colder winter than last in the Northeast this year.
Nationwide, those who use natural gas to heat their homes will pay 14 percent more this winter, according to the report. National Grid customers on Long Island should be mostly spared, however, as company spokeswoman Wendy Ladd told Newsday that its customers shouldn't see much more than a 1 percent hike in their winter bills.
Mother Nature isn't always predictable, however. If temperatures this winter are 10 percent lower than forecast, heating oil customers will pay 9 percent more to heat their homes. If the mercury is 10 percent warmer than forecast, customers will pay 13 percent less than last year.