SDG&E earns National Arbor Day Foundation Award for tree care

Utility to co-host Arbor Day celebration April 18

Apr 18, 2009

Media Contact:
Sabra Moallem

San Diego Gas & Electric

(877) 866-2066


        SAN DIEGO, April 18, 2009 – San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has been named “Tree Line Utility” by the National Arbor Day Foundation for environmental leadership in caring for the health of trees while providing safe and sound management of tree growth along electric power lines.

        “We are proud to be honored for our tree care, training, planting and education efforts for the seventh consecutive year,” said David L. Geier, vice president of electric transmission and distribution for SDG&E.  “Last year, we planted and contributed to the community more than 1,000 trees of all sizes throughout our service territory.”

        To commemorate Arbor Day, SDG&E will co-host a public celebration event with the City of San Diego from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 18 at Dorothy Petway Neighborhood Park (on Rigel St. off Main St. near the I-5 and I-15 interchange).  San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders will kick off the event with a brief ceremony at 9 a.m.  The festivities will include:  planting of 60 trees, giveaways of up to 200 starter trees, and educational and safety demonstrations by representatives of the City of San Diego, SDG&E, the Community Forest Advisory Board, San Diego Regional Urban Forest Council, the Urban Corps and other vegetation-management groups.

        In addition to planting new trees throughout the region, SDG&E manages nearly 400,000 trees as part of its Tree Smart Program.  Through this program, the utility works with neighborhoods and qualified tree-expert companies to prune or remove trees near power lines to provide safe and reliable power.  Tree trimming and pole clearing are an integral part of maintaining compliance with state and federal laws to improve safety and keep outages to a minimum.  These activities also facilitate service restoration during storms by managing the growth and maintenance of a healthier, more storm-resistant tree stock near power lines.

        Helpful tips from SDG&E on tree planting and safety are available online at SDG&E’s Web site,

        National Arbor Day was founded by J. Sterling Morton in Nebraska in 1872 and is celebrated the first week in April.  The National Arbor Day Foundation is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees.  To learn more, go to

        SDG&E is a regulated public utility that provides safe and reliable energy service to 3.4 million consumers through 1.4 million electric meters and more than 840,000 natural gas meters in San Diego and southern Orange counties.  The utility’s area spans 4,100 square miles.  Exceptional customer service is a priority of SDG&E as it seeks to enhance the region’s quality of life.  SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego.