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NorthWestern Energy Files Annual Natural Gas Supply-Cost Tracker to Montana Public Service Commission

Jun 01, 2017

Butte, Mont. – June 1, 2017 – NorthWestern Energy has submitted its annual natural gas supply cost tracker to the Montana Public Service Commission for review and approval.

The annual tracking period begins July 1 and ends on the following June 30 of each calendar year. The supply cost rate that appears on customer bills fluctuates on a monthly basis depending on market supply costs and other factors. The annual filing serves to “true-up” actual vs. estimated costs over the previous period and set the new benchmark for coming tracker year. The rate, when multiplied by the customer’s usage, is included in the total bill along with transportation and delivery costs.

The July 2017 projected rate of approximately $0.31 per therm compares to $0.25 per therm in July 2016. The difference between the June 1, 2017 approved rates and July 1, 2017 proposed rates represents an increase for a typical residential customer using 100 therms per month of $5.33 per month, or $63.96 per year. The increased cost of natural gas supply represents an overall total bill increase of 7.12 percent. Individual impacts will vary depending on use.

As a reminder, natural gas supply cost rates adjust monthly in line with market conditions. Natural gas market supply costs are dependent on weather and overall supply and demand factors that are not entirely predictable. Natural gas transportation and delivery costs do not adjust on a monthly basis. NorthWestern’s customers mostly use natural gas as a heating fuel in the winter and use very little natural gas in the summer months.

Anyone interested in reviewing the filing in its entirety may do so by accessing it at or by contacting the Montana Public Service Commission either at its office in Helena or at

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About NorthWestern Energy
NorthWestern Energy provides electricity and natural gas in the Upper Midwest and Northwest, serving approximately 701,000 customers in Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska.  More information on NorthWestern Energy is available on the company's website at

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