That means the average family will spend $986 for space heating from October 1 to March 31.
EIA expects moderately higher prices in all fuels, except electricity, where spending will decline some 2%. The forecast assumes these higher prices, but milder weather overall, which will lower consumption in many areas.
The lower-48 states are forecast to be 3% warmer than last year in October through March, and 1% warmer than the 30-year average, projects the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). [www.noaa.gov] But the project varies widely by region.
The Northeast is expected to be some 5% colder than last winter, while the South is projected to be 15% warmer.