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natural gas

CITY News

Rochester Gas & Electric and its sister company, New York State Electric & Gas, will be allowed to raise their electricity rates slightly over the next three years, but will take steps to move away from natural gas under a modified rate case settlement approved Thursday by state utilities regulators.

Under the rate plan approved by the state Public Service Commission, RG&E customers will see electricity bill increases of roughly 1.6% in the first year, which starts Dec. 1, and roughly 2% in each of the second and third years.

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Demand for natural gas is growing across the Northeast. Meanwhile, natural gas production is booming in Pennsylvania.

Connecting the two requires building pipelines across New York state -- something Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Department of Environmental Conservation have persistently blocked, declining to grant the necessary water quality permits.

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump may have handed pipeline developers a new weapon, signing executive orders aimed at clearing up red tape in the oil and gas industry.