By Mike Kruzman /

With natural gas prices rising nationally, Consumers Energy is helping Livingston County residents what it means for them and what they are doing to keep costs reasonable.

It won’t be long until furnaces will be firing up to heat local homes warm through the cold season, and spiking natural gas prices can only cause concern. Consumers Energy reports that their 1.8-million natural gas customers will likely see bills increase, but add that they should be mostly shielded from the current uncertainty and volatility of the market, according to a release.

Their underground storage fields, on average, have supplied roughly 50% of the natural gas they provide during the winter and can increase that supply to 80% on peak days, if needed. The remaining amount is purchased on an as-needed basis, which means residents may see impact from the current market pricing. Consumers reports that they are modernizing their natural gas infrastructure for safety, reliability, and to help protect the environment. System upgrades, which include replacing aging pipes, are expected to be complete in 2030.

Consumers expects that after its completion, total residential gas bills will be lower than they were in 2008. In 2021, the average household pays roughly $2.16 a day for natural gas, with overall bills being 21% less than they were 10 years ago.

The utility offers a variety of payment assistance programs that residents can use to help keep their homes warm during cold month. This assistance can be found online at, or by dialing 2-1-1.