Tag Archive for: san diego gas and electric

Sweetwater Responds to Floating Solar Opposition

The Sweetwater Authority learned of and greenlighted the design of a floating solar array on its reservoir all in the same day. The swiftness of the approval after considering only a single company put some members of its governing board and the public ill at ease.

SDG&E Breaks Ground for ‘Microgrid’ in Clairemont to Maximize Renewal Energy

San Diego Gas & Electric broke ground on the Clairemont microgrid Tuesday, one of four projects the utility has planned at its existing substations.

Once finished, the Clairemont microgrid will be able to provide backup power to San Diego Fire Station 36, the Balboa Branch Library and local schools such as Lafayette Elementary, Sequoia Elementary, Innovation and CPMA Middle Schools and Madison High School.

Microgrids are small-scale grids that can operate independent of or parallel to the larger regional grid to keep critical facilities powered during unexpected outages.

Each microgrid project is paired with energy storage, with the four projects bringing an additional 39 megawatts of battery capacity to the region. SDG&E currently has 95 MW of utility-owned energy storage online, with another 200+ MW in development.

Power Shutoffs Should Be Last Resort, Regulators Warn

The president of California’s utility regulator warned a top power company Monday that power outages to prevent equipment from sparking wildfires should only be used as a last resort.

“We need specifics on where you have improved, where you are lagging and where you are focusing your resources,” California Public Utilities Commission President Marybel Batjer told representatives of San Diego Gas & Electric. “Utilities will be judged by outcome, not by plans.”

Public Power Agency Preparing Launch With Clean Energy Emphasis

San Diego Community Power (SDCP), the local government agency created to speed up the transition to renewable energy, will officially start serving its first customers in less than two weeks.

The launch is the culmination of years of debate over whether governments can be trusted to purchase electricity on behalf of homes and businesses, or if that responsibility should stay with San Diego Gas & Electric, the region’s private utility.

Go With the Flow: Battery System in Bonita to be Tested for Use in Microgrids

A battery storage demonstration project already providing a carbon-free source of electricity to California’s grid is about to be tested to see how well it can work on microgrids.

Located on a bluff at a San Diego Gas & Electric substation in Bonita, the energy storage project uses vanadium redox flow battery technology that stores electricity when the grid has excess supply and then discharges the energy when the power system needs it.

Second Lawsuit Filed Over San Diego’s Pure Water Project

Earlier this year, the city of San Diego filed a lawsuit against San Diego Gas & Electric in a dispute over the utility’s underground infrastructure obstructing the construction of a $1.4 billion water recycling project.

Now, a second and separate lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a San Diego resident claiming an agreement between the city and SDG&E to help get the project started is illegal.

Landmark Carlsbad Smokestack Coming Down

Anyone who’s driven past the Encina Power Station, a coastal Carlsbad landmark since the 1950s, can’t miss the changes in recent weeks.

Demolition of the old power plant is finally underway. Scaffolding lines the seaward side of the boxy concrete building, and there’s more at the top of its distinctive 400-foot-tall smokestack.

Opinion: California’s Energy System Should Be Resilient, Flexible and Affordable

As essential service providers, utilities are responsible for helping to ensure the health and well-being of our communities. The weight of that responsibility has gotten heavier as climate change and the pandemic take its toll on our beautiful state and the people who live here.

SDG&E Customers Will Receive $64 in Carbon Offset Credits

San Diego Gas & Electric residential customers will see their electricity bills reduced by $32.28 in both August and September thanks to a climate credit program. Designed to fight climate change, the California Climate Credit will come from a state program that requires power plants, natural gas providers and other large industries that emit greenhouse gases to buy carbon pollution permits. The credit on customers’ bills is their share of the payments from the state’s program.

Helix Water District’s Calavo storage tank was ideally positioned to play home to the new repeater. Photo: Helix WD emergency communication

New Helix Water District Connection Improves Emergency Communication

East San Diego County firefighters and first responders will be better prepared to respond to emergencies due to improved communication capacity through a new partnership with the Helix Water District. The Heartland Communication Facility Authority recently installed a new radio repeater on Helix Water’s Calavo tank, located near Mt. Helix.

“When public agencies work together to improve the lives of our citizens, everyone benefits,” said Helix Board President Mark Gracyk. “We are delighted with the outcome and are very proud to participate in making East County a safer place to live.”

Heartland’s goal is to provide its customers with the highest quality of public safety communications services. Heartland provides public safety communication services to 13 fire agencies throughout East San Diego County. It uses a universal radio system – known as a VHF radio – to communicate with fire agencies and first responders.

New radio repeater improves public safety

Though reliable, the hilly terrain of East County can interfere with VHF radio communications. Diagram: Helix WD emergency communication

Though reliable, the hilly terrain of East County can interfere with VHF radio communications. Diagram: Helix Water District

Though reliable, the hilly terrain of East County can interfere with VHF radio communications. As part of its effort to improve communication in El Cajon and Spring Valley, it needed a suitable location to install a radio repeater between the two communities. The Calavo storage tank was ideally positioned to play home to the new repeater. Heartland approached Helix to work out an agreement.

“Heartland Communications Facility Authority knows the needs of our local emergency communication infrastructure,” said Dan McMillian, Helix Water District board member. “When Heartland approached Helix, our board saw this as an opportunity for our two agencies to work together for the benefit of the communities that we serve.”

“The addition of a radio repeater on the Calavo Drive water tank will allow firefighters from throughout the state who respond to the East County to communicate with each other and the dispatch center using this repeater,” said Carlos Castillo, Director of Heartland Communications. “Communications are an integral part of the firefighting effort in suppressing wildland fires, and firefighter safety relies on an effective communication infrastructure.”

Project completed prior to anticipated 2020 wildfire season

Improvements at the Calavo site included installing a new radio repeater and a four-foot antenna at the top of the tank. Photo: Helix WD

Improvements at the Calavo site included installing a new radio repeater and a four-foot antenna at the top of the tank. Photo: Helix Water District

Construction started in March 2020 and was completed in June 2020. Improvements at the Calavo site included installing a new radio repeater and a four-foot antenna at the top of the tank. As part of the project, San Diego Gas and Electric installed a new electric service and meter at the site so Heartland’s equipment can operate independently from Helix’s pumps and monitoring equipment.

“Heartland Communications would like to thank Helix Water District for allowing us to install our VHF repeater on their water tank,” said Castillo. “This collaboration between Helix and Heartland is a win-win for the fire service and the community. It will provide the critical communications infrastructure needed to enhance public safety.”

The Heartland Communication Facility Authority provides emergency communication services for its member agencies, which include Alpine Fire, Bonita Fire, San Miguel Fire, City of El Cajon, City of La Mesa, City of Lemon Grove, Lakeside Fire, City of Santee, Barona Fire and Viejas Fire.

The Helix Water District treats and delivers water to 277,000 people in La Mesa, El Cajon, Lemon Grove, and parts of Spring Valley, Lakeside, and unincorporated San Diego County.