Fighting climate change
Lowering our carbon footprint
As a provider of gas and electricity to millions of Californians, PG&E works hard to manage greenhouse gas emissions. Doing so is integral to our ongoing efforts to provide safe, reliable, affordable and clean energy.
We remain focused on:
- Managing our carbon footprint
- Helping customers reduce their energy use with industry-leading tools and incentives
- Advancing low-carbon policies for California and the country
- Addressing the need to adapt to changing climate conditions
Reporting our impact
The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) named PG&E to its 2015 Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI), recognizing us for the quality of our climate change-related reporting. The CDP is an independent organization that maintains the largest global database of corporate climate change information. We earned a perfect score of 100, and were one of only four U.S. utilities to make the list. Read the announcement. Visit Perfect Score for PG&E on Prestigious Climate Change Disclosure List.
We report our greenhouse gas emissions to the California Air Resources Board and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on a mandatory basis. Visit Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventory and Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP).
On a voluntary basis, we report a more comprehensive emissions inventory to the following organizations:
- The Climate Registry (a nonprofit organization)
Reducing our greenhouse gas emissions
The electricity we provide ranks among the lowest rates of greenhouse gas emissions in the nation. Our most recent independently verified CO2 emissions rate of 435 pounds of CO2 per megawatt hour (MWh) is about one-third of the national utility average.
Beyond providing clean and renewable energy, we’re actively working to reduce our carbon footprint in a variety of other ways, such as:
- Reducing energy use in our facilities.
- Reducing methane and other emissions in our operations.
- Investing in lower-emission vehicles.
- Building a more sustainable supply chain.
Advancing responsible solutions
We were the first investor-owned utility to support California's enactment of Assembly Bill (AB) 32. This landmark law set a goal of reducing state greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2020. Learn about AB 32 and the Cap-and-Trade program. Visit Assembly Bill 32 At-a-Glance.
In 2015, California’s governor signed Senate Bill (SB) 350, which increases the state’s Renewables Portfolio Standard to 50 percent by 2030 and doubles state energy efficiency goals. PG&E fully supported SB 350 as an important step toward achieving California’s aggressive climate change and clean energy goals.
We also continue to work with our customers to achieve energy savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions. We offer a full portfolio of options, including some of the nation's leading programs for energy efficiency, demand response and solar installation. PG&E’s Solar Choice Program gives customers the option to purchase up to 100 percent of their power from solar energy, without the need to install panels. Visit Join the Solar Energy Movement.
Other efforts include helping local governments develop strategies and plans to reduce emissions and connecting them with PG&E programs and other resources that meet local needs.
Planning for potential climate change impacts
From extreme weather to rising tides, the threat that climate change poses to crucial sectors of the U.S. economy is becoming all too apparent. For PG&E, it requires that we act now to manage the potential risk to our energy infrastructure and operations.
PG&E’s Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment examines our exposure to the forces of climate change, including:
- Flooding during severe storms
- Sea level rise
- Land subsidence
- Heat waves
- Changes in precipitation patterns
- Wildfire danger
It also describes the steps we’re taking to prepare for altered climate conditions. Download Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment (PDF, 7.46 MB).
Our approach to addressing changing climate conditions has four key aspects:
- Robust emergency response plans and procedures to address near-term risks, including more extreme storms, heat and wildfires
- Active engagement at the federal, state and local level on climate change adaptation and resilience
- A multi-year, comprehensive risk assessment process to prioritize infrastructure investments for longer-term risks, such as sea level rise
- An in-house climate change science team that regularly reviews the most relevant science and integrates its research into PG&E’s risk assessment process
We also continue to make substantial investments to build a more modern and resilient gas and electric system that can better withstand extreme weather and natural disasters.