Memorandum on State Utility Disconnection Moratoriums and Utility Affordability

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Contributed date

June 21, 2021 - 6:59pm

Critical Commentary

This memorandum created by the National Governors Association contains estimates for the financial impact that COVID-19 has had on utilities across the country as of June 2021, after the ending of many winter seasonal moratorium and as many COVID-19 induced moratoria are being lifted as well. It's estimated that there are $32 billion in electric and gas arrearages at the end of 2020, with as many as 20% of households being behind on utility payments, and 13.9 billion in aggregate financial impact to water utilities. 

I think it's important to trace various reports estimating utility arrearages due to COVID-19 to fully grasp the breadth of household energy vulnerability and energy infrastructure vulnerability that has resulted from COVID-19. These debts are largely due to short-term moratoria policies that did not include plans for the ending of the moratoria and to address the inevitable debt that would culminate due to the moratoria. These estimates vary by source and flashpoint in the pandemic, and it's likely that we'll never know the true utility debt that has culminated from the pandemic. 


National Governors Association 

Group Audience

Cite as

National Governors Assocation, "Memorandum on State Utility Disconnection Moratoriums and Utility Affordability ", contributed by Morgan Sarao, The Energy Rights Project, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 21 June 2021, accessed 19 April 2024.