PG&ECorporate Responsibility and Sustainability Report 2022

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Gas Safety

Our Approach

As the owner and operator of one of the largest natural gas systems in the United States, PG&E is responsible for an integrated transmission, storage, and distribution system that consists of approximately 50,000 miles of natural gas pipeline.

The system includes 43,800 miles of distribution main pipeline (as well as additional mileage associated with individual gas services), 6,400 miles of backbone and local transmission pipeline, and various gas storage facilities. The system also includes nine natural gas compressor stations, which receive and move natural gas through our pipeline network. PG&E’s system is supported by five independent gas storage providers.

Our focus remains on maintaining and operating this system safely and reliably, with public and workforce safety as the single most important driver of our work. While we have made progress in key safety areas, we are continuously improving as part of our commitment to gas safety excellence.

2021 Milestones

Gas Transmission System

PG&E continues to invest in the safety and reliability of our gas transmission pipeline system. From 2011 to 2021, we achieved the following results:

  • Validated safe operating pressure by strength-testing 1,566 miles of gas pipeline.
  • Replaced 278 miles of gas transmission pipeline.
  • Automated 399 valves, enabling automatic or remote-control shutoff of gas in an emergency.
  • Retrofitted 1,925 miles of gas transmission lines to accommodate in-line inspection tools, or ”smart pigs,“ which are used to inspect the condition of pipelines using sophisticated technology.

We also conduct surveys of our gas transmission system by air to ensure that there are no safety risks or unknown excavations occurring on or around our pipeline.

Gas Distribution System

We continue to improve the safety and reliability of PG&E’s gas distribution system through enhancements to leak response and repair, the deployment of new tools and technologies, and an overhaul of our approach to records and information management.

PG&E uses a diverse array of state-of-the-art tools to survey and inspect our gas infrastructure by air, land, and water. Crews use handheld devices; aircraft equipped with LiDAR technology; leak-detecting vehicles, boats, and drones; and all-terrain-vehicles to help identify leaks and make repairs when needed. Since 2014, PG&E’s Picarro gas leak survey vehicles have enabled us to quickly identify leaks and prioritize them for repair.

Other highlights from 2021 include:

  • Fixing open minor non-hazardous workable leaks within 113 days on average, exceeding our target performance of 150 days
  • Responding to gas odor reports within 20 minutes on average
  • Replacing 1,185 miles of gas main

Measuring Progress

PG&E has measured our progress enhancing the safety of our gas system since 2010 and remains committed to becoming the safest, most reliable gas company in the nation.

2010 2021
icon of a stopwatchGas Odor Response Times
Average response time in minutes 33.3 20.6
Percent response within 60 minutes 94.4% 99.5%
icon of a antennaSCADA Footnote 1 Visibility and Control Points
Transmission pressures and flows 1,300 2,548
Transmission control points 870 1,001
Distribution pressures and flows 290 4,608
icon of a stack of documentsLeak Backlog
Grade 2 open leak average duration N/A 113 days
icon of a shovelDig-In Reduction
Third party gas dig-ins per 1,000 USA tickets 3.5 0.91
2010 2011–21
icon of a gas pipeGas Transmission
Miles of pipeline replaced 9 >278
Miles of pipeline strength tested 0 >1,566
Miles of pipeline made piggable 130 >1,925
Automated valves installed 0 399
icon of a house with gas connectionGas Distribution
Miles of main replaced Footnote 1 27 1,185
  • 1. In 2014, all known remaining cast iron pipe was decommissioned.1
Natural Gas Throughput
2019 2020 2021
Total Natural Gas Throughput (million cubic feet or MMcf) Footnote 1 866,897 848,705 895,520
  • 1. Includes interdepartmental natural gas sales for the purpose of electric generation but excludes other interdepartmental natural gas sales.1