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Californians soon to see credits on their utility bills to help offset high cost of energy

BILL PAYING
Posted at 6:22 PM, Feb 03, 2023

You’re about to get some money back on your next energy bill.

The California Public Utilities Commission is sending out the twice-yearly Climate Credit earlier than usual in response to the high cost of natural gas.

California Climate Credits usually go out in April but customers can see the credit as soon as this month.

“We’ve definitely seen an increase on our bills for PG&E and SoCalGas," said Arroyo Grande resident Katie Aguilar.

“$250 and up when we would spend maybe $40," said Guadalupe resident Cynthea Ferrell.

Many people are turning to alternatives just to save a buck.

“Me and my partner literally have to buy space heaters, heated blankets, just to cut down just so we don’t use so much gas because it’s actually cheaper for electricity right at this second," Ferrell added.

The California Climate Credit is a state program designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. SoCalGas customers will receive a credit of $50.77 on their February or March bill while PG&E customers will see a $38.39 credit on their energy bill in the following billing cycle.

It’s an automatic credit, meaning customers do not need to do anything to receive the deduction on their utility bills.

For some locals, it’s still not enough as they try to keep up with the rising costs.

“I mean, it’ll be helpful but really with how high it jumped up, it’s not much of a help. It’s really minimal," Ferrell explained.

“Any little bit helps. I think, generally, the bills will stay high so the cost will still be there," Aguilar said.

Customers can expect to see another Climate Credit on their utility bills in October.

PG&E suggests the following:

  • Dialing down your thermostat. You can save about 2% of your heating bill for each degree that you lower the thermostat (if the turndown lasts a good part of the day or night). Turning down from 70 to 65 degrees, for example, saves about 10%.
  • Lower your water heater temperature. By setting your water heater temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, you can reduce the amount of energy it takes to produce and maintain hot water.

For more ways to save on your electric bill, you can visit this website.

To learn more about SoCalGas's assistance fund, you can click on this link.