This page shows typical energy-related terms to help you better understand your energy statement.
Account used to maintain records of authorized costs and revenues. Think of balancing accounts as a PG&E profit and loss sheet. When energy sales and income are higher than expected, the balancing account is overcollected. Overcollected amounts are used as a credit when rates are set for the following year. When energy sales and income are lower than expected, the balancing account is undercollected. Undercollected amounts are added to PG&E income levels for the next year.
A minimum amount of electricity or natural gas use that satisfies a substantial portion of the energy needs of the average PG&E customer in a specific service area called a "climate zone." Set by the California Public Utilities Commission, baseline quantities vary depending on customer location, the time of year (summer or winter), and home heating source.
A rate for a customer who receives energy supply and delivery services from PG&E. An unbundled or "direct access" rate is for those customers who receive energy delivery services from PG&E but take energy from another supplier.
A five-member state regulatory body that oversees the electric and natural gas operations of PG&E and other investor-owned utilities to ensure their customers have safe and reliable energy service at reasonable rates.
Ten zones across PG&E’s service area that represent similar geographic and climatic characteristics. Approved by the California Public Utilities Commission, these climate zones (P, Q, R, S, T, V, W, X, Y and Z) are used to create the baseline amounts that go into calculating residential electric and natural gas bills.
A California public policy that separates the amount of natural gas and electricity PG&E and other California investor-owned utilities sell from the profits they earn. The policy is designed to encourage utilities to promote energy efficiency measures that will reduce customer energy use.
A five-member regulatory agency that oversees U.S. wholesale energy trading markets, national hydropower licensing, and interstate natural gas pipeline and electric transmission construction, among other activities.
A regulatory process held every four years before the California Public Utilities Commission that sets the revenues PG&E can collect from its ratepayers to operate, maintain and expand its natural gas transmission pipelines and storage facilities. PG&E’s most recent GT&S rate case covers the period from 2011 through 2014.
A regulatory process held every three years before the California Public Utilities Commission that sets the revenues PG&E can collect from its ratepayers to operate, maintain and expand its electric generation, electric distribution, and natural gas distribution operations. PG&E’s most recent GRC covers the period from 2011 through 2013.
A for-profit utility company such as PG&E owned by shareholders whose operations and earnings are regulated by a state agency such as the California Public Utilities Commission.
A five-member federal agency charged with overseeing PG&E’s Diablo Canyon nuclear plant and other nuclear plants around the U.S. to ensure safe operation and on-site storage of nuclear waste.
A utility which is collectively owned by the citizens of the area it serves, including rural cooperatives, municipal utilities, and energy and power marketing authorities.
A rate structure for residential electric and natural gas customers of PG&E and other California investor-owned utilities that is designed to encourage energy conservation by increasing the price for each unit of energy the more a customer uses. The rates for each tier are set by the California Public Utilities Commission.