Every day, we lead gas pipeline safety work across Northern and Central California to ensure that the millions of customers we serve have the safest and most reliable gas system in the nation. In addition to ensuring that the pipeline is operating safely, in every community we look at the area above and around the natural gas transmission lines to be certain that first responders and our own emergency response crews have critical access to the pipelines in the event of an emergency.
It is because of our commitment to safety that we have spent or earmarked nearly $3 billion to strengthen our gas infrastructure all across California communities we're proud to serve.
Ensuring the safety of our customers, their families, the communities and our employees will always be our number one priority. We know how important safety is to you and nothing is more important to us.
Trees, tree roots, brush and structures can threaten safety because they block firefighters' access during emergencies and can prevent our crews from performing important safety and maintenance work. Tree roots also pose a safety risk because they can damage the protective coating of underground pipelines—leading to corrosion and leaks.
According to leading national experts on pipeline safety and first responders, putting safety first means removing trees and other obstacles located too close to underground pipelines. Doing so will help ensure public safety by preventing gas leaks and speed up response times by first responders and our emergency crews in the event of any emergency or natural disaster.
We understand how important trees and natural landscape are to families, the community and the environment. Trees are important to us, too. We want all of our customers to know that when a tree needs to be removed for safety reasons, we will work together with the property owner or civic leaders to ensure the area is restored and replacement trees are planted in a safe area. All this is done at our expense—with no charge to our customers or the community.
As always, we're listening to the concerns of our customers and the community to make sure that this work is done and done right.
We're absolutely committed to working with each customer and the community to create a common understanding about each other's needs so that we can reach a shared solution that ensures safety and the beauty of the communities we live in.
Our commitment to safety is not just about today, it's about our future. It's about making sure our children and grandchildren have the safest neighborhoods in California and the nation for years to come.
Trees matter to us and we know they matter to the customers and communities we proudly serve. We are absolutely committed to ensuring the safety of the community while protecting our local environment.
Wherever gas safety work is being done, we will make every effort to protect the area wildlife and trees. Before conducting any safety work that could lead to replacing trees, for example, we will complete environmental reviews, including surveys of birds and other wildlife.
If a tree or shrub has to be replaced or moved, it will be because of safety reasons or risks to homeowners, first responders or the community. To be clear, we will only replace trees that pose a threat to public safety. We will work very closely with property owners, as well as local communities, to restore the area and replace trees—all at PG&E's expense.
Right-of-way: A right-of-way designates an area of land above the pipeline that PG&E may use to maintain, inspect and safely operate the pipeline. Pipeline rights-of-way are documented in written agreements with property owners called "easements."
Easement: Easement agreements, which are recorded documents, create the shared responsibility between PG&E and property owners to maintain the area above the pipeline.
© Pacific Gas & Electric Company