Low-income customers benefit from no-cost home energy improvements from The Gas Company

Media Contact:
Raul Gordillo

Southern California Gas Co.

(877) 866-2066



        LOS ANGELES, Dec. 10, 2008 – As families begin to prepare for winter, they could get help trimming their heating bills from Southern California Gas Co. (The Gas Company). 

        The Gas Company is offering low-income customers who qualify free energy-saving home improvements.  In addition, the utility will repair or replace – without charge – natural gas furnaces for homeowners who qualify.

        The program, which is open to qualified customers who live in the property they own or rent, is part of The Gas Company’s Direct Assistance Program.  Renters need the approval of the property owner to participate in the program.  Bonded and licensed contractors who are screened by The Gas Company perform the necessary weatherization work. 

        “This winter is going to be especially difficult for customers on limited incomes due to the economy,” said Hal D. Snyder, vice president of customer programs at The Gas Company.  “Our Direct Assistance Program helps to ensure families can keep their homes warm, and at a lower cost, due to energy-efficiency improvements.”

        The Gas Company’s Direct Assistance Program includes weatherization services, such as caulking, weather-stripping doors, and the installation of low-flow showerheads and attic insulation.  Since the program began in 1983, The Gas Company has weatherized more than 500,000 limited-income homes.

        Customers may be eligible to participate if they currently receive benefits from the Women, Infants and Children, Healthy Families, Medi-Cal, Food Stamps, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or LIHEAP programs.  Customers can qualify for a 20-percent discount on their natural gas bill through the California Alternate Rates for Energy program.

        To sign up for The Gas Company’s Direct Assistance Program, or to learn more about other assistance available, contact The Gas Company at (800) 331-7593 or (800) 342-4545 in Spanish, or visit The Gas Company’s Web site, www.socalgas.com.

        The Gas Company officials expect natural gas prices this winter will be about the same or slightly lower than last year.  Customers are being encouraged to implement energy-efficiency measures where practical, including: turning down the temperature on the thermostat to 68 degrees during the day and to 55 degrees at night, and increasing home insulation to ensure the most efficient use of gas furnaces. 

        Southern California Gas Co. has been delivering clean, safe and reliable natural gas to its customers for more than 140 years.  It is the nation’s largest natural gas distribution utility, providing safe and reliable energy to 20.3 million consumers through 5.7 million meters in more than 500 communities.  The company’s service territory encompasses approximately 20,000 square miles in diverse terrain throughout central and Southern California, from Visalia to the Mexican border.  The Gas Company is a regulated subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE).  Sempra Energy, based in San Diego, is a Fortune 500 energy services holding company.