SRP weighs temporary 1 percent reduction in electric prices

Salt River Project’s directors will consider at their March 27 meeting dropping electricity prices for more than 1 million SRP customers.

Summer electricity rates would dip under a proposal the SRP directors will consider later this month. (Submitted photo)

Under the six-month temporary decrease, recommended by SRP management, prices would be reduced by approximately 1 percent effective with the May-through-October 2018 billing cycles. Prices will return to original winter season prices approved in 2015 with the November 2018 billing cycle.

The $18.8 million temporary decrease in the fuel and purchased power adjustment mechanism, a component of overall prices, will save the typical SRP residential customer an average of $1.56 per month during the six-month period when temperatures and electric bills are the highest of the year, SRP officials stated in a release.

SRP General Manager and CEO Mark Bonsall said the temporary decrease is possible because the cost of natural gas, a primary fuel in power plants, has trended lower.

“Given the current market conditions, we are passing on the cost savings directly to our customers during summer billing months for the third year in a row,” he stated in the release. “As a community-based, not-for-profit organization, our customers pay for fuel and purchased power costs without markup on their monthly bills.”

Because of their significantly lower carbon emissions than traditional coal resources, natural gas resources play an increasingly important role in SRP’s generating fleet, company officials stated.

As an essential part of SRP meeting its sustainability, Bonsall said the flexible operations of natural gas are needed to integrate more renewable resources – such as solar and wind – to the grid while maintaining reliability.

“We make decisions in the best interest of our customers and the communities we serve,” he said. “Revenues generated through the sale of electricity are reinvested in the company to help keep SRP prices among the lowest in the Southwest. “We offer numerous price plans to fit our customers’ lifestyle and budget, providing them with information, programs and services to help them make smart choices about water and energy use to meet their specific needs. We also offer efficiency and rebate programs to help our electric customers save energy and money.”

SRP is the largest provider of electricity in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. It also is the metropolitan area’s largest supplier of water.

The Queen Creek Independent is mailed each month to 24,000 homes.

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