BY THE NUMBERS
3 -- Percent increase in wholesale rates under the April fuel cost adjustment
$3.25 -- Extra cost of the fuel cost adjustment next month for typical EPB customer
$144.26 -- Average monthly bill for EPB customer who uses typical 1,461 kilowatthours a month
2.2 -- Percent increase in April 2012 compared with a year ago
Sources: TVA, EPB
The wholesale price of electricity in the Tennessee Valley will rise 3 percent in April, costing the typical Chattanooga homeowner another $3.25.
TVA announced Tuesday that it will raise its fuel cost allowance in April to reflect the expected drier-than-usual month, which will reduce TVA's cheapest power source from its hydroelectric dams.
"With less hydro generation in the forecast, purchased power costs are expected to be higher," TVA spokesman Scott Brooks said.
Despite the April increase, TVA's overall rates remain comparable to those of a year ago.
TVA adjusts its wholesale rates each month to reflect the changing price of fuel and purchased power. TVA raised its base rates by 2 percent in October, but the utility's monthly fuel cost allowance has dropped in eight of the past 12 months.
"Any time rates are on the increase, it's not good for jobs and production," said John Van Mol, director of the Tennessee Valley Industrial Committee, which represents the biggest industrial power users in TVA's seven-state region. "But the bright spot is that rates are fairly consistent with where they were a year ago."
Dave Flessner is the business editor for the Times Free Press. A journalist for 35 years, Dave has been business editor and projects editor for the Chattanooga Times Free Press, city editor for The Chattanooga Times, business and county reporter for the Chattanooga Times, correspondent for the Lansing State Journal and Ingham County News in Michigan, staff writer for the Hastings Daily Tribune in Nebraska, and news director for WCBN-FM in Michigan. Dave, a native ...