12/16/2018

News

PG&E rate proposal would raise typical bill more than $10 a month

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. asked regulators Thursday for permission to raise nearly $2 billion in new revenue from ratepayers over three years, starting in 2020, with more than half the proceeds going to cover wildfire prevention work. If it is approved by the California Public Utilities Commission, the proposal would increase an average residential […]

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Rethinking California’s electric utilities

Beginning with a misbegotten and misnamed “deregulation” of the utilities 22 years ago – which drove PG&E into bankruptcy – the state has been, by legislation and regulatory decrees, increasingly micromanaging how they generate, distribute and price electric power. They have slowly evolved into quasi-governmental entities while maintaining the façade of private ownership, but without […]

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California Girds for Higher Power Prices From PG&E After Fires

Already paying some of the highest electricity prices in the country, customers of California’s largest utility, PG&E Corp. could soon face large rate increases due to the state’s catastrophic wildfires. PG&E asked state regulators on Thursday to approve a plan to sharply increase revenues it seeks from customers over a three-year period, with a hike […]

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PG&E may not survive latest wildfire without more state help

How much of wildfire costs not covered by insurance should be paid by California’s giant investor-owner utilities has been a significant issue since at least 2007. That’s when wildfires ravaged northern and eastern San Diego County, killing two people and destroying more than 1,300 homes. San Diego Gas & Electric argued that it should be […]

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California to Conduct Wide-Ranging Review of PG&E, Including Possible Breakup

A California regulator said late Thursday that it was expanding a probe of PG&E Corp.’s P safety practices to explore the way the company is managed and run, including whether it should be broken up. “I will open a new phase examining the corporate governance, structure, and operation of PG&E, including in light of the […]

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Sacramento, your summer electricity bill is about to jump. Here’s what to do about it

SMUD officials say the new system is revenue neutral, meaning that ratepayers overall should end up paying the same annually as they do under the current system because of lower winter rates. But, as the chart below shows, many ratepayers will be hit with price shock during summer months, including a price spike in July […]

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Why are SDG&E’s rates higher than other California utilities?

A year-over-year review by the Union-Tribune of electricity rate charges by the three investor-owned utilities shows SDG&E’s rates are not only higher than their cohorts but they have also been rising faster. Residential baseline rates during the summer months from June 1 through Oct. 1 have gone up 80.7 percent since January 2014. . . […]

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PG&E Testifies Against Trump’s Rollback of Auto Emission Rules

California’s biggest electric utility wants the U.S. government to keep its current auto emission standards, which it says is critical to advance the adoption of electric cars. PG&E Corp. plans to invest $360 million to support electric car charging infrastructure and “we want a stable environment for our investors and customers,” Anna Brooks, senior manager […]

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PG&E power bills set to rise after Gov. Brown signs Diablo Canyon bill

Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday set the stage for higher PG&E utility bills by signing legislation to ease the impacts from the shutdown of the Diablo Canyon facility, California’s last remaining nuclear power plant. San Francisco-based PG&E intends to phase out the reactors of its Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in San Luis Obispo County […]

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San Onofre emails show history of private meetings between regulators, energy insiders and advisers to Gov. Jerry Brown

Emails that California utility regulators withheld for years — and recently released under a court order — show that political appointees of Gov. Jerry Brown met privately to discuss state energy policy. . . .Critics were quick to condemn the meetings, which according to the emails were held through most of 2014. “They are not […]

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How a Florida Utility Became the Global King of Green Power

Who is the world’s largest operator of wind and solar farms? It’s also America’s most valuable power company. Still stumped? It’s by design. “That is a marketing problem…that we foster intentionally,” Michael O’Sullivan, NextEra Energy Inc.’s head of renewable development, told University of Notre Dame students in 2015. The Florida company has grown into a […]

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The Capitol weighs another big, dicey power play

[Deregulation] opened the door to market manipulation by Enron and some other big energy players, drove one major utility (Pacific Gas and Electric) into bankruptcy, almost sent another (Southern California Edison) into insolvency, caused blackouts and wound up costing California consumers many billions of dollars. This brief excursion into not-so-distant history is important because the […]

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Plan for 14-state power grid faces key Senate hearing on Tuesday

The legislation, now known as Assembly Bill 813, will be considered by the Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications committee, the influential panel chaired by Hueso. It was also referred to the Senate Judiciary committee because the bill rewrites terms of the state-controlled nonprofit that now governs most of the state power grid. Supporters say the […]

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Global Investment in Wind and Solar Energy Is Outshining Fossil Fuels

Global spending on renewable energy is outpacing investment in electricity from coal, natural gas and nuclear power plants, driven by falling costs of producing wind and solar power. More than half of the power-generating capacity added around the world in recent years has been in renewable sources such as wind and solar, according to the […]

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In California, natural gas availability still an issue 3 years after major leak

After the well at Aliso Canyon was sealed, the state of California prohibited Southern California Gas (SoCalGas) from filling the storage facility, a series of underground caverns made of depleted former oil wells, to capacity. SoCalGas also may not draw gas from Aliso Canyon unless other options have been exhausted. The result is that California […]

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