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CA Grid in Flux, Picker Notes

20 Jul

State energy policy stands “at a unique point in time” with the chief goal ahead being to figure out the right mix of fossil fuel resources needed to keep power affordable and reliable, California’s top utility regulator told an Assembly committee July 19. California Public Utilities Commission President Mike Picker told the Assembly Utilities & […]

The Buzz

14 Jul

The governor’s carbon cap-and-trade renewable legislation passes through a Senate panel after a six-hour hearing in which environmental justice activists and local and regional air districts denounced the measure. The oil company-friendly bill package was introduced Monday. Gov. Jerry Brown’s cap-and-trade deal appears to be more about cementing his legacy than it is about improving […]

CPUC Trims Utilities’ Return on Equity

13 Jul

Utility regulators July 13 cut the allowable return on equity for the state’s major investor-owned energy utilities between 0.05 percent and 0.15 percent for the years 2018 and 2019. The California Public Utilities Commission also promised to review the future allowable rate. The CPUC decision came this week on July 13 in response to a […]

Calls for Conservation Protect the Grid

22 Jun

A flex alert issued for June 21 and 22 helped the state grid get though the worst of the persistent heat wave that gripped California this week without any major outages. Power demand peaked on June 20 at 44,184 MW, compared to an all-time high of 50,270 MW during the summer heat storm of 2006, […]

Massachusetts Bests CA in Energy Efficiency

14 Jun

California’s three investor-owned utilities are among the nation’s top ten when it comes to energy efficiency programs, according to a report by the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy on June 14. The top two investor-owned utilities in the nation were Eversource and National Grid, which both operate in Massachusetts. Pacific Gas & Electric […]

JUICE: Beyond a Bud Light Future in EV Charging

24 May

The beer flowed May 19 in Sacramento after an all-day meeting on the future of “retail competition” in the California electric power industry. But when the waiters picked up the glasses and mopped up the suds little really had been settled. While other states abound with consumer choice in retail power plans—sporting such features as […]

So CA Preferred Resources & Coastal Plant Replacements Lag

22 May

Southern California faces no shortage of generation or power import capacity this summer although actual deployment of “preferred resources” procured by investor-owned utilities is lagging. However, a shortage of natural gas due to the ongoing closure of the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage field could pose a risk to energy reliability this summer. That scenario […]

Utility Parents Report Flush Earnings

9 May

California’s investor-owned utilities all reported healthy increases in net income for the first three months of 2017, with Pacific Gas & Electric reporting the most significant growth. Edison International: The parent company of the regulated utility Southern California Edison reported earnings of $362 million, or $1.11 a share, in the first quarter of 2017. That’s […]

Regulated Utility Earnings Rise in 2016

28 Feb

  California’s regulated utilities and their holding companies’ 2016 earnings increased under California Public Utilities Commission approved rates and spending programs, utility executives told financial analysts recently. (more…)

SHORTS

19 Jan

The Los Angeles Department of Water & Power board of commissioners approved a customer bill of rights for the muni’s customers on Jan. 17, as expected. The bill of rights, promoted by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, places response time deadlines for the department in hooking up new customers, helping people on the phone, and […]

CPUC Unanimously OKs Largest Private Utility EV Charging Program

15 Dec

In their final meeting of the year and the last one for outgoing commissioners Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval, state energy regulators approved Pacific Gas & Electric’s hefty but scaled back pilot electric vehicle charging program. At a cost to ratepayers of $130 million, it is the most expensive and largest of the three private […]

Undercurrents

15 Dec

The company pushing to develop a marine export terminal that would ship coal and petroleum coke across the ocean from Oakland sued that city’s council for adopting a resolution last summer banning these exports from the project. The Oakland Bulk & Oversized Terminal claims that the Oakland City Council’s prohibition impacted the value of its […]

Pilots to Encourage Non Residential Ratepayers to Shift to Mid-day Use Okayed

10 Nov

State energy regulators this week unanimously approved Southern California Edison’s and San Diego Gas & Electric’s small pilots to test midday price discounts to cut energy at times of peak power use. Discounts will be offered to up to 200 industrial, commercial and agriculture ratepayers. These energy users, who have mandatory time-of-use rates, are being […]

JUICE: Energy Diversity

20 Oct

When California Current, previously called CA Energy Circuit, launched in 2003 a big concern of our small operation was workplace diversity. Being owned by two women negated the traditional male dominance issue, but being an all-white duo was a concern. (more…)

CPUC Restricts SDG&E’s New Marketing Arm Formed to Fight Choice

18 Aug

State utility regulators approved a plan by San Diego Gas & Electric to fight community choice aggregation in San Diego by establishing an “arm’s-length” marketing organization. (more…)

This Week’s Buzz

8 Jul

The buzz in this week’s issue of Current includes the latest on the turf battle in San Diego between San Diego Gas & Electric and community energy advocates. Like Pacific Gas & Electric when it was confronted with choice in Marin County, the San Diego utility wants to keep its ratepayers from joining a community aggregator. In […]

Ongoing Controversy over SDG&E Plan to Fight Community Choice

7 Jul

A plan by San Diego Gas & Electric to fight community choice aggregation in San Diego by establishing an arm’s length marketing organization would be approved under a draft resolution by the California Public Utilities Commission. (more…)

Proposed SDG&E Triennial Rate Case Boosts Revenue Beyond 10%

26 May

San Diego Gas & Electric would see a $48 million increase in its 2016 revenue requirement this year, a 2.8 percent boost, under a pending California Public Utilities Commission decision by president Mike Picker. (more…)

SHORTS

12 May

Renewable and energy efficiency programs got a boost with the U.S. Senate’s passage of the 2017 Energy and Water Development appropriations bill. Passed May 12 on a vote of 90-8, the bill includes $2 billion for clean energy, including sustainable transportation programs that develop new fuels, materials, and vehicle engines; energy efficiency programs that develop […]

Private Utility Earnings Mixed

5 May

It was mixed news on earnings for the parent companies of California’s three investor-owned utilities, with PG&E’s first quarter earnings soaring above the previous year’s in spite of hundreds of millions of dollars in potential liabilities. (more…)