Today, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and Southern California Gas Co. (The Gas Company) announced their support of the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) adoption of California’s first Long-term Energy-Efficiency Strategic Plan. This plan solidifies California’s leadership position in energy efficiency and provides clear guidelines to achieving maximum energy savings for businesses and residences throughout the state.
Extending from 2009 to 2020, the CPUC’s plan is the state’s first framework for saving energy and making energy efficiency the highest-priority resource in meeting California’s energy needs.
“We believe energy efficiency is the most cost-effective and environmentally responsible means to meet our long-term energy needs, so we strongly support the CPUC’s efforts,” said Anne Shen Smith, senior vice president of customer services for SDG&E and The Gas Company. “Our energy-efficiency programs will save our customers billions of dollars in energy costs over time, while also cutting greenhouse-gas emissions and improving our environment. Putting extra momentum behind these efforts benefits all of us.”
SDG&E and The Gas Company offer these tips for saving energy and saving money today:
• Installing low-flow devices on faucets and showers can save up to 11 percent on water usage;
• Water heater blankets can save 9 percent in heating costs;
• Using electric fans instead of the air conditioning can reduce monthly electricity costs by up to 90 percent.
Over the last 15 years, SDG&E programs have helped customers cumulatively save 3.4 million megawatt hours of electricity, enough to supply energy to more than 550,000 homes for one year. This savings has reduced the peak demand on SDG&E’s system by 782 megawatts, the equivalent of a large power plant. In addition, these energy-efficiency programs have helped customers cumulatively save 45 million therms of natural gas, enough to supply energy to more than 75,000 homes for one year. This has resulted in net savings to customers of nearly $800 million.
During this same time period, The Gas Company programs have helped customers cumulatively save more than 350 million therms, enough to supply about 600,000 homes for one year. This has resulted in net savings to customers of approximately $250 million.
The utilities also are expanding their procurement of environmentally friendly power generated from solar, wind, hydro, biomass and biogas sources in alignment with California’s goal of meeting 20 percent of customers’ electric demand with renewable power by 2010.
The Gas Company is the nation’s largest natural gas distribution utility, providing safe and reliable energy to 20.3 million consumers through 5.7 million meters. 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 840,000 natural gas meters in San Diego and southern Orange counties.
The Gas Company and SDG&E are subsidiaries of Sempra Energy. Sempra Energy, based in San Diego, is a Fortune 500 energy services holding company with 2007 revenues of more than $11 billion. The Sempra Energy companies’ 13,500 employees serve more than 29 million consumers worldwide.