Serving O'Brien & Clay Counties

Better than last year

Mild winter helps stabilize natural gas situation

Residents in northwest Iowa and across the Midwest might wince when they remember their gas bills from a year ago.

Thanks to a polar vortex that froze the middle of the country, natural gas use surged as folks huddled in their homes to stay warm. At the same time, the record-setting cold snap caused gas wells in Texas to freeze up and limit supplies. Natural gas prices subsequently skyrocketed and utilities were left to foot the bill.

Demand increased so much in February of 2021 that Hartley Municipal Utilities had to complete spot purchases, leading to a bill that was $152,000 greater than th...