May 18, 2023 - 

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), in ongoing efforts to address electricity reliability and meet climate goals, today opened a new proceeding to update electric utility transmission siting regulations to better address the needs of California and provide a clearer, more efficient, and consistent process.

Under the direction of Senate Bill 529 (Hertzberg, 2022), the CPUC will update its General Order (GO) 131-D, which governs the siting, construction, or modification of new or existing electric transmission and generation related facilities. GO 131-D was originally adopted by the CPUC in 1970 and it was last updated in 1995. This new Rulemaking would implement changes mandated by SB 529 and consider additional modifications to modernize the rules governing the CPUC’s review of transmission and generation projects. Pursuant to SB 529, the Rulemaking would propose modifications to GO 131-D to authorize utilities to use a streamlined permit-to-construct process when expanding or upgrading existing transmission facilities.

The Rulemaking will also consider additional modifications to GO 131-D that would:

  • Create a process for permitting battery storage projects;
  • Provide the CPUC with better cost information for electrical infrastructure projects;
  • Increase cost transparency for all projects subject to GO 131;
  • Provide better notice to local governments of projects in their locality; and,
  • Better align GO 131 with other CPUC orders.

“Updated rules that provide efficient pathways for review of upgrades and modifications to existing transmission infrastructure will help carry California forward to a clean energy future,” said CPUC President Alice Reynolds.

“This Rulemaking will consider how California renewable energy goals can be supported by streamlining the construction process while maintaining California Environmental Quality Act standards.  I look forward to following the important issues that will be considered,” said Commissioner Genevieve Shiroma.

“This is an important step that recognizes the need for faster transmission development to meet our state climate goals,” said Commissioner John Reynolds.

“This is an important proceeding for advancing the CPUC’s ability to help accelerate deployment of electric transmission projects critical to the state’s clean energy and climate goals,” said Commissioner Karen Douglas.

The Rulemaking will both fulfill a statutory mandate and help to modernize GO 131-D to facilitate the achievement of California’s climate goals, and also contribute to reliability and control costs for customers.

The proposal voted on is available at

The CPUC regulates services and utilities, protects consumers, safeguards the environment, and assures Californians’ access to safe and reliable utility infrastructure and services. For more information on the CPUC, please visit


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