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CPUC’s Safety and Enforcement Division Testimony Alleges Violations by SoCalGas in Aliso Canyon Leak

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Today the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) Safety and Enforcement Division publicly issued its opening testimony in the CPUC’s investigation into the leak that started on October 23, 2015, at Southern California Gas Company’s (SoCalGas) Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility.

The testimony will inform the CPUC’s proceeding (I.19-06-016), which is expected to conclude in late 2020. Opening testimony from intervening parties to the proceeding is due Dec. 20, 2019, and SoCalGas’s testimony replying to opening testimony is due February 21, 2020.

The Safety and Enforcement Division’s testimony alleges numerous safety, health, and recordkeeping violations and multiple instances in which SoCalGas did not cooperate with the Safety and Enforcement Division’s investigation, resulting in additional violations of statutes, and CPUC rules and regulations.

The testimony is available at www.cpuc.ca.gov/Aliso.

Since the leak, the CPUC and its state partner, the Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, have taken aggressive steps to prevent a similar leak from occurring again, including the Department’s stringent new regulations for all underground natural gas storage reservoirs. Enacted immediately after the leak began and made permanent on October 1, 2018, the regulations ensure that no single point of failure in a well can cause a release of gas into the atmosphere. The regulations have been cited by the federal Pipelines and Hazard Materials Safety Administration as some of the strongest in the nation.

The CPUC also has a proceeding underway to determine the feasibility of minimizing or eliminating the use of Aliso Canyon while still maintaining energy and electric reliability for the Los Angeles region (I.17-02-002). Subscribe to documents related to either proceeding at http://subscribecpuc.cpuc.ca.gov/.

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