Elementary Students Learn About Renewable Natural Gas and Energy Efficiency with Help from SoCalGas and San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization

May 31, 2018

LEMOORE, May 31, 2018—Sixth graders at Meadow Lane Elementary School in Lemoore today got a close-up view of a natural gas fueled city sweeper truck and learned about natural gas safety and energy efficiency with the help of Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) and the San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization (SJVCEO). About 90 students took part in the Energy Education Assembly, which was funded by an Environmental Champions grant from SoCalGas and put on by SJVCEO, a non-profit that works with public and private organization in Kings and Tulare Counties to demonstrate the benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency.

“Natural gas provides clean, reliable, and affordable fuel for vehicles, to generate electricity, and to heat our homes,” said Colby Wells, public affairs manager for SoCalGas. “The goal of today’s Energy Education Assembly was to show students how important natural gas is to providing affordable energy to our communities, how it can be renewable, and how to use it safely and efficiently.”

“The SJVCEO was thrilled to receive grant funds from SoCalGas to bring natural gas education to students; teaching them to adopt efficient energy use habits is so important as it helps both the students’ families and schools decrease energy consumption and save,” said Sarah Farell, energy policy advisor for SJVCEO. “These students are the leaders of our future, and there is great value for them to see how their energy use decisions and actions impact energy performance throughout their communities.”

Free smart thermostats were also awarded to three students who correctly answered the most questions about the lessons.

SoCalGas is a leader in supporting clean air initiatives and reducing emissions linked to climate change. Through the research and development of new technologies that improve energy efficiency, as well as rebate programs, the company has reduced emissions equal to taking almost 700,000 cars off the road since 1990. These advances have also helped save its customers more than $670 million in utility bill costs.

SoCalGas is also working to increase the production and use of renewable natural gas, or biogas, which turns methane emissions into a source of clean energy. Dairy biogas development is rapidly increasing in California. There are about 40 projects in development in the state, and experts estimate there could be as many as 120 projects underway by 2022.

The company additionally works with fleet owners to get more clean natural gas trucks on the road through funding programs like the Prop 1B Goods Movement Emissions Reduction program and the Carl Moyer Grant program. Today, more than 60 percent of all natural gas engines in California are fueled by renewable gas delivered by the company’s pipelines.

The transportation sector accounts for more than 80 percent of smog forming emissions in California. The latest generation of natural gas engines can reduce those emissions by more than 90 percent, and when fueled with renewable gas, they can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent or more.

This year, through its Environmental Champions Initiative, SoCalGas provided grants totaling $500,000 to forty-two nonprofit organizations to implement projects focused on clean air, energy, or water. Funded by Sempra shareholders, the program has awarded over 120 grants totaling more than $1.5 million since its inception in 2015.

In addition, SoCalGas supports technology-based learning in science, technology, engineering, and math at schools across the company’s service territory. Last year, the company provided nearly $1.3 million in grants to hundreds of educational organizations in Southern California.

About SoCalGas

Headquartered in Los Angeles, SoCalGas® is the largest natural gas distribution utility in the United States, providing clean, safe, affordable and reliable natural gas service to 21.7 million customers in Central and Southern California. Its service territory spans 22,000 square miles from Fresno to the Mexican border, reaching more than 550 communities through 5.9 million meters and 101,000 miles of pipeline. More than 90 percent of Southern California single-family home residents use natural gas for home heat and hot water. In addition, natural gas plays a key role in providing electricity to Californians—about 60 percent of electric power generated in the state comes from gas-fired power plants.  

SoCalGas has served communities in California for 150 years and is committed to being a leader in the region’s clean energy future. The company is working to accelerate the use of renewable natural gas, a carbon-neutral or carbon-negative fuel created by capturing and conditioning greenhouse gas emissions from farms, landfills and wastewater treatment plants. SoCalGas is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego. For more information visit socalgas.com/newsroom or connect with SoCalGas on Twitter (@SoCalGas), Instagram (@SoCalGas) and Facebook

About SJVCEO

The San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization is a non-profit located in Fresno tasked and dedicated to leading the eight-county region that makes up the San Joaquin Valley and the High Desert Region. Our vision is to help improve the quality of life by significantly increasing the use and reliance on clean energy (energy efficiency and renewable energy sources). We are the Implementing Partner for the three-utility (SCE, SCG, and PG&E) Valley Innovative Energy Watch Partnership in Kings and Tulare Counties as well as the High Desert Regional Energy Leader Partnership in the high desert. We work with cities, counties, and public and private organizations to demonstrate the benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy.

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For further information: SoCalGas: Melissa Bailey, (213) 244-2442, mbailey@semprautilities.com or SJVCEO: Samantha Dodero, (559) 490-1808, sdodero@pesc.com


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