High voltage transmission towers stretching into the distance at sunrise/sunset

Colorado has among lowest energy bills in the country, study finds

© iStock - zhaojiankang

Derek Draplin | The Center Square

(The Center Square) – Colorado has among the least expensive energy bills in the country, a new study found.

WalletHub found Coloradans pay an average of $269 in monthly energy bills, which ranks 49th among the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Only Washington state ($262) and the District of Columbia ($217) had lower total energy costs, according to the report.

July, followed by August, typically sees the highest energy consumption by Americans, which “leads to higher energy costs during this period,” WalletHub said.

The personal finance website calculated each state’s average using a formula that included electricity, natural gas, motor fuel and home heating oil.

Colorado ranked 50th for electricity ($92), 15th for natural gas cost ($43), 39th for motor fuel cost ($134), and 34th for home oils cost ($0). 

“Many factors affect the energy prices in a given state,” said Harrison Fell, a senior research scholar at Columbia University. “For electricity, these factors include state and local taxes, state energy and environmental policies, market regulation and design, the generation mix across fuel types, and access to generation fuels.” 

Coloradans could see a hike in their energy bill under a proposal by Xcel Energy, the state’s top utility provider, to recover costs from February’s winter storm.

If the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approves the plan, consumers could see a $6.20 per month hike in their gas bills and a $2.86 per month hike in their electric bills. The hikes would take effect in 2022 and last two years, according to the proposal.

Colorado also passed a transportation funding law that includes a new gasoline fee that will result in a 2 cents per gallon increase at the pump in 2022-23 and raises to 8 cents per gallon in 2028-29.

The state's 22 cent gas tax, which hasn't changed since 1991, ranks 42nd in the country, according to the Tax Foundation.