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Electric Restructuring in California:
An Informational Report


  The California Public Utilities Commission's CPUC) Decision 96-12-075 (CPUC December 1996) halted the preparation of the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) studying the CPUC's preferred policy for electric restructuring. The CPUC's Decision established that restructuring legislation [Assembly Bill 1890 (AB 1890, Stats. 1996, Ch. 854)] resolves to move the traditional regulated electric utility industry to a more competitive market system. The CPUC has no discretion to make a decision on moving to a competitive market or to frame the basic structure of the market. Therefore, there is no legal basis to continue analysis under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). However, the decision directed the compilation of relevant, readily available information outside the context of CEQA in order to provide information of interest to other agencies. This informational report is organized into four chapters. Chapter 1 describes California's current electric system and those elements that are currently changing due to federal mandates. Chapter 2 defines the elements of restructuring including a description of the technical elements created to implement the new market structure.  Chapter 3 discusses the issues concerning California's future electric system. The following environmental issues were addressed: air quality; energy conservation; electric system reliability; public health (electric and magnetic fields); and land, water, and biological resources. Concluding this report, Chapter 4 is a summary of the issues associated with restructuring and policy recommendations. Following Chapter 4, appendices are attached. The appendices include: references, air quality technical information, simulation modeling report, and list of preparers. Technical information which supplements the text is located in notes at the end of each chapter.  

Questions about this report should be directed to the CPUC Environmental Review Team at (415) 703-2126.  To order a hard copy of this report, contact Andrew Barnsdale.  Be sure to include your name, address, and phone number. A fee of $0.20/page may apply.


Last Modified: 10/24/2007

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