By David Middleton – Re-Blogged From WUWT
PG&E Could Shut Off Power For Millions To Prevent Wildfires
February 7, 2019
MATTHEW S. SCHWARTZ
Pacific Gas & Electric could shut off power to more than 5 million customers when extreme weather conditions are ripe for wildfires to break out, the company said Wednesday. It’s an expansion of the company’s previous power shutoff program, which only let the company turn off power to about half a million customers.
Several power companies submitted their required “wildfire mitigation plans” to California regulators this week. But PG&E’s plan may be especially consequential, given that its power lines have been blamed for several Northern California fires over the past few years. The company filed for bankruptcy last month in the wake of billions of dollars in potential liability after two years of wildfires.
The company told the state’s public utilities commission that to address wildfire risk, “shutting off power will likely be necessary and may need to be performed more frequently due to the extreme weather events and dry vegetation conditions.”
“We understand the urgency of the situation, that lives could be at stake and that we need to move more quickly,” the company said.