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Atmos Energy says most customers will pay slightly higher winter heating bills

Take Steps Now to Reduce Energy Cost
Atmos Energy Corporation (NYSE:ATO) said most of its utility customers in Tennessee could expect their natural gas bills this coming winter to be slightly higher compared to last winter.  
“Our residential customers could expect, on average, to pay 6% more for the natural gas they use this winter, compared with their gas costs during the past winter,” said Kevin Akers, president of Atmos Energy’s Tennessee Division.  “The increase is the result of higher wholesale natural gas prices.”  Akers said that Atmos Energy does not make any profit on the natural gas it distributes to its utility customers.
In 2012, the wholesale cost of natural gas fell to its lowest point in nearly ten years.   Even with the projection of modestly higher wholesale natural gas costs, customers are paying significantly less than the winter of 2008 when natural gas prices jumped dramatically to $13 per thousand cubic feet.  
Residential customers can take steps now to save money on their heating bills come winter.  “A little planning goes a long way when it comes to reducing winter heating bills,” said Akers. “Using energy wisely and making a few household changes can create substantial savings for customers.”  To learn more, visit: or follow the energy-saving tips below:
Energy Saving Tips:
• Change or clean furnace filters today and then once again each month during the heating season. Furnaces consume less energy if they “breathe” more easily.
• Set your water heater’s temperature at 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Lowering the water heater’s setting could cut your water-heating costs by 20 percent.
• During the winter, set your thermostat to 70 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 58 degrees when away from home for more than a few hours.
• Close vents and doors in unused rooms and close cabinet and closet doors on outside walls, which can leak a great deal of air.
Energy Management Tools:
To help customers manage their utility bills, Atmos Energy offers several features on its website at
• Energy Profile offers a personalized energy-use report and savings advice.
• Energy Calculator estimates how much it costs to operate home appliances.
• Energy Library provides detailed information about many energy topics.
• Energy Advisor answers energy questions [from an Atmos Energy expert]. 
• Energy Comparison Tool lets you compare annual energy use and costs.
• Energy Savings Tips shows a number of easy ways to save energy at home.
Energy Assistance:
If you are having trouble paying your utility bill, please visit our website to learn more about energy assistance programs.  Low‐income customers are eligible for federal energy assistance through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps pay energy bills and weatherize homes.
Additionally, Atmos Energy customers unable to pay their natural gas bills should call the company before becoming delinquent,” Akers emphasized.  “By calling us to discuss a payment plan, we can work with them to help prevent a service disconnection and can help them find energy assistance that might be available,” he said. 
“Every fall, we also encourage our customers to call a licensed plumbing or heating contractor for a winter tune-up of their natural gas furnace and appliances.  It’s a matter of safety, of course.  But, servicing your appliances can also keep them operating efficiently to save costs,” Akers said.
About Atmos Energy
Atmos Energy Corporation, headquartered in Dallas, is one of the country’s largest natural-gas-only distributors, serving  approximately 3 million natural gas distribution customers in more than 1,400 communities in eight states from the Blue Ridge Mountains in the East to the Rocky Mountains in the West. Atmos Energy also manages company-owned natural gas transmission pipeline systems and provides natural gas marketing and procurement services to industrial, commercial and municipal customers primarily in the Midwest and Southeast. For more information, visit Atmos Energy can also be accessed through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Posted on: 12/30/2013


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