The price of home heating oil is expected to hit an all-time high this winter. That’s unwelcome news from Maine to Maryland, where millions of people rely on the fuel to stay warm. The spike could make life difficult for heating oil suppliers and their low-income customers.
When the price of crude oil jumps the price of home heating oil pretty much follows.
In the last 12 months, the price of crude has shot up 40%.
What’s causing the spike?
Aaron Brady, an analyst for IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates, says its emerging markets like India and China.
It’s that time of year when people light fires in the morning, or see their tomatoes glazed in frost. It won’t be much longer before the real cold comes. Last year, some 45,000 families around New Hampshire received some help paying their heating bills. But this winter, all signs point to a cut in federal fuel assistance.
The math is pretty simple, says Mark Wolfe with the National Energy Assistance Directors’ Association.
“At this point both the House and Senate both call for a cut of about $1 billion dollars.”
The Northern Pass hydropower project from Quebec, which includes transmission lines through New Hampshire, has divided our state with passionate disagreement on the amount of energy it will bring, how badly that energy’s needed, and the economics of the project, including its affect on property values. We’ll talk to those on both sides of this debate.
This month’s installment of our 11 for '11 series of big picture conversations on the issues of our times. Today, it’s energy, specifially oil. Oil is trading at 112-dollars a barrel, up from 86-dollars a year ago. Michael Klare says the era of easy oil is behind us. He’s made news for his concept of “extreme energy” – the pursuit of fossil fuels in increasingly difficult environments using expensive and sometimes dangerous methods.
Faced with strong, statewide opposition officials from Northern Pass say they are reworking parts of their plan, including finding a better route through the North Country. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.
NorthernPass officials say they want to change some important parts of their plan to bring 1,200 megawatts of hydro-electric power from Canada.
Their possible changes include finding a new route between Canada and Groveton, one that will calm the furor in the North Country.
Last month at least 2,300 people attended seven public hearings on the project.
In October, the Northern Pass Project. comprised of Massachusetts-based utility NStar and Northeast Utilities, formally announced a partnership with Canadian energy giant Hydro-Quebec to bring hydroelectric power from Canada through New Hampshire. Promising new construction jobs, cheaper and greener energy sources, and additional tax revenues, the plan at first enjoyed broad support.