On Wednesday, California’s major investor-owned utilities (IOUs) submitted mandatory wildfire mitigation reports to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) outlining how they plan to prevent wildfire risk from their operations in the future. The reports, required as part of 2018’s Senate Bill 901 (Dodd), must now undergo thorough review by the CPUC and a public comment process before they can be finalized.
Of particular note is the plan submitted by PG&E, which includes (1) potential shutdowns for 10 times the number of customers as in previous fire events, (2) removing 375,000 trees and clearing 2,450 miles of vegetation that could ignite power lines, (3) enhancing inspections on distribution poles in high threat areas, and (4) allowing transmission lines at 500,000 volts or lower to be deenergized, which significantly increases the number of customers impacted by a power shutdown.
The first workshop on the wildfire mitigation plans will be held on February 13, 2019 at CPUC headquarters in San Francisco. The workshop will also be webcast.
Detailed information on plans, workshops and webcasts can be accessed here.