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Above: An employee uses a forklift to offload bundles of plastic gas pipe at PG&E's Fremont Materials Center.
 

At PG&E, we understand that our primary responsibility is to provide safe, reliable and affordable gas and electric service to our customers. While we have experienced some improvement with regard to reliability over the past two years, our performance falls short of our own expectations.

While our electric system reliability meets the California Public Utilities Commission’s “adequate service” standard, we currently rank in the third and fourth quartile for North American utilities, respectively, as measured by the System Average Duration Index (SAIDI) and System Average Frequency Index (SAIFI). In addition, PG&E’s SAIDI and SAIFI results do not compare favorably to California’s two other largest investor-owned utilities, Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas and Electric Company.

As a result, PG&E is proposing to significantly improve the reliability of its electric distribution system. To achieve this level of performance, we have developed a multiyear program that:

  • Sets higher standards for service reliability to our customers,
  • Enhances overall reliability of our energy delivery and increases grid flexibility to avoid severe or sustained outages, and
  • Brings our reliability metrics closer to that of other investor-owned utilities in California and in North America.

The program will include major initiatives, such as:

  • Increasing available capacity and interconnectivity of our system,
  • Implementing distribution automation, and
  • Improving "mainline" protection on rural circuits.

These initiatives will provide a significant impact, long-term benefits and synergies with other initiatives. Ultimately, our customers will experience greater service reliability, reduced frequency and duration of outages and be served by a system that is incorporating elements of a Smart Grid, which will provide our customers with more products and services and more control over their energy demand and usage patterns.