Tag Archives: PG&E

PG&E Can’t Find Original Records For South Bay Gas Lines

by Jaxon Van Derbeken, San Francisco Chronicle

CPUC shield

The Public Utilities Commission inquiry is focused on PG&E’s distribution pipes, which snake through neighborhoods, delivering gas to homes and businesses. They are smaller than transmission pipelines such as the one that exploded in San Bruno in 2010, killing eight people. That disaster happened when a flawed pipeline weld — which did not show up on PG&E records and had never been tested — ruptured. … Utilities commission staffers are pressing for a large fine against PG&E for the Carmel blast, saying the company did little about the issues raised by its missing De Anza records until after the explosion. Read More ›

SB 215 Sustains Drive For CPUC Reforms Originally Sought In SB 660

1/27/2015 Update: The Senate approved SB 215 (Leno) in a 37-0 vote yesterday (with no votes recorded for Senators Bates, Liu and Wolk). The bill awaits committee action in the Assembly. SB 215 incorporates CPUC reforms CFC had sought in SB 660 (Leno), which had passed unanimously in both the Assembly … Read More ›

PG&E Management Allegedly Ordered Papers Destroyed After Blast

by Jaxon Van Derbeken, San Francisco Chronicle

PG&E pipeline ignites an explosion in San Bruno 9/10/2010.

A former Pacific Gas and Electric Co. official hired after the San Bruno gas-pipeline explosion to clean up the company’s records said management ordered her to destroy documents, and that she found a telltale preblast analysis of the pipe in the garbage, according to a federal court filing. … PG&E’s alleged “pushback” against [the employee’s] recommendations … “is direct evidence of PG&E violations of record-keeping regulations, and explains how PG&E did not genuinely attempt to address its known record-keeping deficiencies,” prosecutors said. Read More ›

Customers Of Clean Energy Programs Hit With Fee Increase

by Lizzie Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

coal plant at Morro Rock

Hundreds of protesters came from as far as San Diego to oppose the fee increase at Thursday’s meeting in San Francisco. They carried homemade signs reading “Stand Up to Natural Gas!” and “CPUC: Consumers Pay Again?!” Public comment on the change stretched for more than two hours. … PG&E originally filed an application to raise the fee by 70 percent in June, but submitted another request last month to as much as double it. The fee helps the power company pay for energy it contracted for when it had more customers, preventing remaining patrons from bearing the brunt of the costs. The charge is required by law and determined by a formula implemented by the CPUC in 2011. Read More ›

PG&E Lacks Documentation To Prove Pipelines Are Safe, Panel Says

by Jaxon Van Derbeken, San Francisco Chronicle

PG&E pipeline ignites an explosion in San Bruno 9/10/2010.

“Together, these violations show how PG&E has made it nearly impossible for this commission to determine — more than five years after the San Bruno explosion — whether PG&E’s currently established” pipeline pressure levels are “actually legally justifiable,” [the watchdog office of the state Public Utilities Commission alleged. … office head] Joe Como said Wednesday that the company’s behavior is not excusable given that it lacks federally required records for 1,000 miles out of its more than 5,000-mile system. Read More ›

Mercury News editorial: Governor’s PUC Emails Should Be Public

by The Editorial Board, San Jose Mercury News

One percenters enjoy fine wine.

Brown stood by former PUC President Michael Peevey long after Peevey’s grossly inappropriate relationship with PG&E became clear. Under Peevey’s watch, the PUC let PG&E take money that was approved for pipeline safety and use it instead for executive compensation before the deadly 2010 San Bruno explosion. The governor also knew Peevey inappropriately engaged in secret talks with Southern California Edison, the majority owner of the San Onofre power plant in San Diego County. But the real surprise was this fall, when he vetoed the six-bill PUC transparency package that was passed unanimously by the Assembly and Senate. Read More ›

PG&E Looking To Raise Fee On Green Energy

by Lizzie Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

coal plant at Morro Rock

Early last month, the Pacific Gas and Electric Co. quietly filed an application to as much as double its exit fee for customers transferring to local green energy programs like CleanPowerSF. … It is ultimately up to the California Public Utilities Commission, which is scheduled to vote on the increase Thursday. If approved, it would take effect Jan. 1. … “It feels like an attack on local green energy programs,” [said Barbara Hale, assistant general manager for power for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission]. …“Did it knock us to the floor? No. Did we stagger? Yes. It’s up to the California PUC now.” Read More ›

From Warsaw To SF, The Roots Of Edison’s Historic Fine

by Chuck McFadden, Capitol Weekly

[The CPUC] levied the unprecedented fine as punishment for failing to disclose a series of meetings and emails, and for providing misleading testimony pertaining to the costs of shutting down the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. Southern California Edison owns 70 percent of the station. … Left hanging was the question of whether the commission would revisit a previously approved settlement deal that has ratepayers coughing up to 70 percent of the $4.7 billion cost of shutting down San Onofre. … The $16.7 million fine is the largest ever imposed on a utility for these specific violations. Read More ›

San Bruno Says PG&E Too Cozy With CPUC’s Mike Florio

by Jaxon Van Derbeken, San Francisco Chronicle

PG&E pipeline ignites an explosion in San Bruno 9/10/2010.

Newly released documents show that PG&E executives had meetings, e-mail exchanges and other communications with utilities commission member Mike Florio that were conducted without public notice. … Florio was a key player in several regulatory proceedings that grew out of the San Bruno [natural gas explosion]. … Florio also oversaw the process that determined how much PG&E customers would have to pay to bolster pipeline safety following the disaster. In December 2012, the commission voted to have customers cover more than half the $2.2 billion in pipeline safety upgrades. Read More ›

Judge: Regulator Should Release Brown E-Mails On Nuclear Shutdown

by Jaxon Van Derbeken, San Francisco Chronicle

San Onofre nuclear plant

The 65 e-mails that [Gov. Jerry Brown and CPUC officials] either sent or received date from 2013 and 2014. “It appears from the record that CPUC and officials from the governor’s office, including the governor himself, were involved in the discussions at the CPUC regarding the San Onofre” [nuclear plant shutdown, attorney Maria Severson told San Francisco Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith]. “The interest of public disclosure as to who and what was behind the decision to make utility customers pay over $3.3 billion for the errors of Edison is of vital importance.” Read More ›

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