SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) issued the following statement today following the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) issuance of a proposed decision on the Diablo Canyon Power Plant (DCPP) joint proposal:
"The DCPP joint proposal represents the most appropriate and responsible path forward for our customers, employees, the local community and the environment. The agreement supports our state's clean energy vision and ensures an orderly transition from nuclear power to other greenhouse gas-free resources, while supporting our local plant workers and neighbors.
“While the proposed decision preserves several elements of the joint proposal, it differs in regards to certain key areas, including the employee, community and energy replacement programs. PG&E strongly disagrees with these proposed adjustments. All of these programs support the key focus of the joint proposal, which is having DCPP serve as a reliable and affordable clean energy bridge to 2025 while other greenhouse gas-free replacement resources are developed to replace the output we need to meet customer demand.
“PG&E and the joint parties have responded to stakeholder insights and feedback with several adjustments during the CPUC’s review process, and accordingly, we believe that the joint proposal in its current state deserves approval. We look forward to advocating for this in our comments back to the CPUC and during final arguments at the end of November.”
According to the CPUC, after a 25-day public comment period, the proposed decision will be forwarded to the regulatory agency’s commissioners for consideration. Final oral arguments at the CPUC will be held on November 28. PG&E has requested that a final decision on the joint proposal be reached this year.
About the Joint Proposal
California's energy landscape is changing dramatically. State policies that focus on renewables and energy efficiency, coupled with projected lower customer electricity demand in the future, will result in a significant reduction in the need for the electricity produced by DCPP past 2025.
Reflecting this change, PG&E partnered with labor and leading environmental organizations on a joint proposal that would increase investment in energy efficiency and renewables while retiring DCPP at the end of its current Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) operating licenses, which expire in 2024 and 2025.
The parties to the joint proposal include PG&E, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1245, Coalition of California Utility Employees, Friends of the Earth, Natural Resources Defense Council, California Energy Efficiency Industry Council and Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility.
Recognizing that the procurement, construction and implementation of a GHG-free portfolio of energy efficiency and renewables will take time, the joint parties agreed to support PG&E in obtaining the state approvals needed to operate DCPP to the expiration of its current NRC operating licenses.
This avoided an early shutdown of DCPP and associated negative economic and social impacts, including replacing the plant's output required to meet customer demand with non-GHG-free resources.
As part of the joint proposal, PG&E immediately ceased any efforts on its part to renew the DCPP operating licenses, and asked the NRC to suspend consideration of the pending DCPP license renewal application. PG&E will withdraw its license renewal application upon CPUC approval of the joint proposal application.
PG&E does not believe long-term customer rates will increase as a result of the joint proposal.
Commitment to Employees and the Community
The parties to the joint proposal are committed to supporting a successful transition for DCPP employees and the greater San Luis Obispo community.
Accordingly, $85 million has been proposed in support of a community transition plan. PG&E, along with San Luis Obispo County, several local cities and the San Luis Coastal Unified School District, announced details of the revised community impact mitigation program last November.
PG&E's proposed DCPP employee program will provide, among other things, incentives to retain employees during the remaining operating years of the plant, a retraining and development program to facilitate redeployment of a portion of plant personnel to the decommissioning project or other positions within the company, and severance payments upon the completion of employment at the end of the plant's license life.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit pge.com and pge.com/news.