Columbia Gas of Ohio Friday filed its gas cost recovery (GCR) adjustment for December with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO), registering a more than 50% drop from December of last year. The GCR of 49 cents/100 cubic feet (1 Ccf) of gas will be 70 cents, or 59%, lower than December 2008 when it was $1.19/Ccf.

The December GCR is the second-lowest heating-season gas cost charge in the last eight years. It was 48 cents in the November 2001 through January 2002 quarter, the company said. December is the fourth-highest gas usage month of the year for Columbia’s residential heating customers and is typically one of the months when bills are highest.

The typical residential customer using 114 Ccf would see a December bill of $92.43, according to company estimates. That is a decrease of $77.80 compared to December 2008, when it was $170.23. Gas costs make up about 60% of the typical residential customer bill.

Compared to November 2009, the December GCR will be down by 7 cents to reflect lower natural gas costs. Higher natural gas usage due to colder temperatures will increase the typical residential customer’s December bill to $92.43, compared to $61.10 in November. Average residential gas usage is 62 Ccf in November, the company said. The December GCR will be in effect from Nov. 25 through Dec. 29.

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