What’s behind the big number of utility shutoffs in Illinois?
Utilities are more expensive than they were last year, thanks to a mix of higher fuel prices and the war in Ukraine. The national Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration estimated natural gas bills for the winter would spike close to 30 percent compared to last year, and electricity costs were set to jump 10 percent. For people who may have already been struggling to keep up with payments, those increases could make it that much more difficult to pay the bills.
Utilities in Illinois shut off households' power around 285,000 times in the first 10 months of last year. That’s the most among the 30 states that make information on disconnections publicly available. To discuss the impact of those shutoffs and who is most affected, The 21st was joined by some of the authors of a report on energy injustice.
Selah Goodson Bell
Energy Justice Campaigner, Center for Biological Diversity
Deputy Director, Energy and Policy Institute
Prepared for web by Owen Henderson
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