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Natural Gas Value Helping Consumers Energy Customers Save On Thanksgiving Cooking Costs -- Best Value In 10 Years

JACKSON, Mich., Nov. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumers Energy's efforts to drive down heating costs and become the most affordable major natural gas provider in Michigan is helping to reduce the cost of cooking Thanksgiving dinner.

Those priceless memories created around the Thanksgiving table with family and friends come this year with the lowest cooking costs for natural gas customers in a decade. The natural gas energy it takes to cook a meal for 12 guests: 54 cents.

The cooking costs break down:
  • Roast stuffed turkey: 34 cents.
  • Large pan of mashed potatoes cooked for 20 minutes: about 3 cents.
  • Giblet gravy cooked on the stove for 10 minutes: less than 1 cent.
  • Homemade dinner rolls baked for 30 minutes: 4 cents.
  • Vegetable casserole: 4 cents.
  • Two baked pumpkin pies: 8 cents.

"Our strategy to invest in natural gas infrastructure and take advantage of the energy value natural gas provides is helping Consumers Energy customers save money," said Lori Harvey, director of financial and gas system planning. "We are proud that our customers are seeing real savings that they can spend on the holidays, or however they wish, because they are seeing lower utility bills in 2013."

Consumers Energy offers these tips to get even more energy value while cooking:
  • Use glass and ceramic dishes. They hold heat well and allow you to lower the oven temperature by 25 degrees.
  • Keep the oven door closed. The temperature drops 25-75 degrees each time the oven door is opened, so monitor cooking time and peek through the oven window, if possible, to check on your food.
  • Use your microwave for defrosting and cooking small portions.
  • Plan to bake more than one dish or cook an entire meal in the oven to save energy.
  • Using roasting bags reduces cooking time in the oven by nearly one-half.

Consumers Energy, Michigan's largest utility, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and electricity to 6.6 million of the state's 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.

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