FOLSOM, N.J. – South Jersey Gas received approval today from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities for an overall rate reduction that will result in an average residential customer saving $14.16, or 10.3 percent, on a 100-therm monthly natural gas bill. 
This reduction is primarily driven by decreases to the company’s Basic Gas Supply Service and Conservation Incentive Program rate components. The BGSS serves as a method to pass along changes in wholesale gas costs directly to customers without affecting SJG’s income. The CIP encourages customers to use natural gas more efficiently, reduce consumption and also adjusts customer bills to account for weather related changes in usage. Since the CIP was instituted in 2006, SJG’s customers have reduced their natural gas use by 49.2 billion cubic feet and have saved $511 million in energy costs.
“Lower wholesale gas prices, coupled with effective gas supply portfolio management, are the primary drivers of this reduction in rates,” said Jeffrey E. DuBois, president of South Jersey Gas. “Our ability to obtain a consistent supply of low-priced natural gas from Marcellus Shale producers has enabled us to provide a significant rate reduction for our customers ahead of this year’s winter heating season. As a result of this decrease, annual residential customer bills today are, on average, nearly 30 percent lower than they were 10 years ago,” said DuBois.
SJG also received approval to adjust its base rates to reflect over $36 million of investments made under its Storm Hardening and Reliability Program. The SHARP is a three year program that was initially approved by the BPU in August 2014 and enables SJG to invest in infrastructure upgrades on barrier islands that will protect against future major storm events.
“Through our investments in the SHARP, we continue our commitment to increasing the reliability of our distribution system, specifically in coastal areas, and to mitigate the potential impacts of severe storms that can affect our systems and most importantly, our customers,” said DuBois.