Wisconsin utilities propose increased rates for renewable energy transition
According to Wisconsin Public Radio, Alliant Energy, Xcel Energy, and Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) have submitted proposals to the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin to raise rates in 2024 due to renewable energy construction costs.
The utilities have proposed upfront increases that they say could help stem later rate increases as well as accelerate the transition to renewable energy. WEC Energy Group’s utilities — We Energies and Wisconsin Public Service — are anticipated to propose similar rate increases later this year.
The steepest rate hikes at this point have been proposed by Alliant, which applied for electric rate increases of 8.4% next year and 5.4% in 2025, as well as a 2024 natural gas increase of 6.3%. Alliant also currently has the lowest residential electric rates among its peer utilities.
In addition, Alliant is looking to recover $122.5 million in lost revenue from higher-than-expected 2022 natural gas costs by adding a surcharge to customers starting in October and continuing through 2025. The surcharge would equate to around a 4.1% increase for customers.
Xcel Energy requested a 4.8% increase in its electric rates and a 5.3% increase in its gas rates for the year; it did not propose 2025 increases.
MGE proposed the smallest rate increase of the three utilities, with a 3.75% electric increase in 2024 and 3.41% in 2025, along with gas increases of 2.56% in 2024 and 1.66% in 2025.