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Prolonged Arctic Air Behind Record U.S. Gas Consumption In January

A person in a red jacket trucks through heavy snowfall in Amherst, New York, United States.
FILE - A person walks on the street as a winter storm rolls through Dec. 24, 2022, in Amherst N.Y. Costly weather disasters kept raining down on America last year, pounding the nation with 18 climate extremes that caused at least $1 billion in damage each, totaling more than $165 billion, federal climate scientists calculated Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2023. A pre-Christmas winter storm is one of 18 billion-dollar-disasters in the last year that pushed damages to the highest since 2017.
Jeffrey T. Barnes/AP Photo

Natural gas consumption set a record in January.

The lower 48 states consumed a record 141.5 billion cubic feet of gas on Jan. 16. That beat the previous record of 137.8 billion cubic feet on Dec. 23, 2022, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

The 2022 record occurred during Winter Storm Elliott, when temperatures plunged into the single digits and below zero right before the Christmas holiday.

The agency attributes the high consumption last month to a prolonged period of Arctic air over much of the country.

Demand for residential and commercial heating increased, as well as for electricity.

Gas consumption averaged more than 130 billion cubic feet a day from Jan. 14 to Jan. 21.

West Virginia is the nation’s fourth largest producer of gas, according to federal data.