PSC says fuel demand to decline

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI
Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network

The state's utility regulating agency says consumers shouldn't have to worry about shortages of fuel or electricity this summer.

The Michigan Public Service Commission says the recession is tamping down demand for fuel and electricity.

Gasoline use is expected to decline by 4% this summer compared to last summer, and diesel use is also expected to go down.

The agency's summer energy projection says that should make fuel shortages and power blackouts less likely.

And it should keep down the costs of motor fuel and natural gas.

Electricity costs could go up, however.

Consumers Energy and Detroit Edison - the state's two largest utilities - have filed plans to raise their rates this summer.

Consumer's rates will go up in two weeks by about 5% unless that's rejected by the Public Service Commission before then.

Edison's rate hike would take place in mid-July.