OK, natural gas prices are going up -way up- this winter. That's the bad news.
I just watched a gentleman from NOAA on C-SPAN, recorded earlier today, who presented NOAA's estimation that winter here (in Central Illinois) is going to be warmer than "normal" (which is really "average" but whatever). That's the good news.
Much higher heating costs coupled with a cold winter would be a great hardship. Higher prices with a slightly warmer than average winter is better news.
Now all I have to worry about is the Avian Flu devastating humanity and high gasoline prices wrecking the economy. I feel slightly less doomed.