09 Oct FAQ: Why is My Bill Going Up?
Recently, we have been receiving a lot of inquiries as to why customers have been receiving bills with higher charges—especially in the last few months. There are a number of different factors to consider, but here are a few reasons that might customers might be seeing a change to the cost of their energy:
Transitioning from Winter to Summer Rates
During summer months, customers demand for electricity is at its highest, especially in the late afternoon and early evening. Electric bills are usually lowest during the milder spring and fall months, when cooling or heating systems aren’t utilized as much. The decreased demand during the non-summer months drive down the cost of electric service.
Experiencing Record Breaking Heatwaves
Record breaking heatwaves this year can also be a contributing factor to increased usage since many households and businesses utilized their air conditioning and cooler systems more frequently and for longer periods of time.
Increased Energy Usage During COVID Stay At Home Orders
Stay at home orders due to COVID-19 have resulted in the increase of energy use due to many families having to work from home and attend school virtually.
SCE Rate Increases
SCE has had rate increase in Januar 2020, June 2020, October 2020 and has one more scheduled for January 2021. While these increases in rates affect the overall total of the bill, WCE customers will continue to see approximately 2% savings on the Generation portion of their billing. In other words, despite all of the increases, energy bills for WCE customers overall continue to be lower than energy bills for SCE customers.
Expiration of California Climate Credit Received Earlier in the Year
The California Climate Credit is a credit applied to customers’ bills each year in April and October as part of California’s efforts to fight climate change. As part of the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) efforts to support customers during the shelter-in-place response to COVID-19, this credit was advanced and distributed in April, May, and June 2020. No climate credit will be delivered during the October billing period.
The State program requires power plats, natural gas distributers and other large industries that emit greenhouse gases to purchase carbon pollution permits. Part of the money collected from these permits is distributed to customers in the form of the California Climate Credit. For more information on the California Climate Credit, please go to the following webpage: https://www.cpuc.ca.gov/climatecredit/.
What help is available?
Increasing energy bills are coming at a time when many households are already experiencing economic strain. Customers are encouraged to see if they qualify for the following SCE income-qualified discounts by visiting the following SCE website: https://www.sce.com/residential/assistance/care-fera.
For energy savings tips or for additional information on understanding your bill, please visit WCE’s website at: www.westerncommunityenergy.com.
Customers can always contact WCE and speak to one of our customer service representatives at (866) 356-4175 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.