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Winter conditions largely to determine longevity of 9-year high gas prices

By CONOR GRIFFITH

NCWV Media

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.  — Natural gas prices hit their highest level in years Wednesday, but the precise effects of that increase will be determined byseveral factors.

According to a recent report by Investor’s Business Daily, the delivery of natural gas for December rose as much as 20 percent to $4.929 per million British thermal units. That’s the highest the price has been since February 2014, when much of the country experienced arctic chills brought on by a polar vortex in which some areas were colder than the surface of Mars. This is also the single biggest price hike in nine years.

“It’s probably due to two reasons,” said Charlie Burd, executive director of the Independent Oil and Gas Association of West Virginia. “First, we’re coming into a heating season. We have a cold snap that’s basically embraced our country. Compared to the five-year average, our natural gas storage is lower now than it has been going into winter. That’s what’s caused our uptick in prices.”

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