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Pennsylvania’s natural gas customers are paying up to $131 million a year for gas they never used, the state Public Utility Commission says.

Nationwide, Pennsylvania trails behind only California in the amount of gas lost each year, according to a PUC report.

Consumers are footing the bill for what utilities call “unaccounted for gas” lost through leaking distribution pipes, inaccurate measurements, thefts or billing problems, the report said.

“I don’t think I should be paying for something I didn’t get,” said Mark Wills of Hempfield. “That’s something (companies) should eat themselves.”

Greensburg resident Denise Pisula said she did not realize lost gas was among the charges “tacked on” her bill.

“Your actual gas bill is not that bad,” Pisula said. “I did not honestly know I’m paying for gas the company lost, but it doesn’t surprise me.”

PUC regulators took steps last month to reduce losses and standardize how utilities calculate them.

It issued a standardized “lost gas formula” and a list of goals to reduce gas losses to 5 percent by 2016 and 3 percent by 2020.

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