Learn what is changing and why

To make electric rates simpler for all customers, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) voted on July 3, 2015 to adopt a series of changes to the residential rate structure. As a result, the way utilities charge for electricity is changing throughout California. The new structure is more closely aligned with the actual costs of providing electric service.

The previous multi-tier rate structure was established during the energy crisis in 2001, when energy was in limited supply, electricity prices were at record highs and issues with electric reliability were frequent occurrences. In addition, renewable energy wasn’t widely accessible and meters were read manually. Since then, things have changed. Progress has been made in nearly every sector of energy.

The Evolution of Energy


Renewable energy sources, such as wind, have become more widely adopted.


New technologies are making it easier to understand how we use energy, and use it more efficiently.


Buildings and the technologies that power them are being designed with energy in mind.


A smarter grid is making it easier to deliver energy.

The new structure began to take effect in 2015 and will continue to roll out through 2020. It is intended to be simpler, to be more closely aligned with the actual costs of providing electric service and to provide customers with a clearer understanding of how their energy use impacts their monthly bill.



New Time-of-Use Rate Options

FERA Monthly Fixed Discount

Tiers Consolidated from 4 to 3

Tier Price Adjustment

Minimum Bill Methodology Change

Tiers Consolidated from 3 to 2

High Usage Surcharge

Tier Price Adjustment

Tier Price Adjustment

Time-of-Use Transition Phase 1

New Electric Vehicle (EV) Rate

Streamlined CARE Discount for all Electric Rates

High Usage Surcharge Decreased due to Shelter in Place (temporary)

New Time-of-Use Rate Options

Time-of-Use Transition Phase 2

Changes in 2016 and beyond

Preparing for the future

  • Beginning in 2020, residential electric customers are expected to be transitioned to a Time-of-Use rate plan where the price of electricity will depend on the time of day. With Time-of-Use rate plans, customers pay lower prices for electricity used during periods of low demand such as late night, early morning, and midday. During this transition, customers will have the ability to select a different rate plan that may better meet their energy needs.
  • PG&E's goal is to make rate plans simpler and easier to understand. As these changes take effect, we will be sure to explain the impact on your monthly energy statement and provide you with information that can help you save energy and money. To see a personalized rate analysis that makes a recommendation for you based on your past 12 months of energy usage data, please sign in to your account.
  • We're here to help you save energy and money through programs such as CARE and the Energy Savings Assistance Program, energy management tips and audit tools, energy efficiency programs and rebates, and payment options including Budget Billing.

Will PG&E make more money from these changes? No.

PG&E does not make any more money as a result of these changes. In fact, PG&E does not make more money when our customers use more gas or electricity. The amount of money PG&E makes is regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission. PG&E makes money on the cost of building the infrastructure to deliver energy as well as by how efficiently we run our business and how effectively we help lower our customers' energy use. PG&E’s average bills will remain among the lowest in the country. Helping our customers use less electricity and gas is in everyone's best interest.

Pie Chart: Energy Supply 50%; Transmission and Distribution 44%; Public Purpose Programs 4%; Other 2%. Average Standard Rate for Electricity=18.2¢ per kilowatt hour

Energy Supply (50%): The cost of generating and purchasing power for PG&E customers. More than 50 percent of our electricity comes from sources that are free of greenhouse gas emissions, giving us some of the cleanest energy supplies in the nation.

Transmission & Distribution (44%): Operating and maintaining the grid to deliver safe, reliable service. Includes new Smart Grid technology to reduce outages and more quickly restore service to customers.

Public Purpose Programs (4%): Promoting the public good, including discounts for income-qualified customers, investments in energy efficiency programs, and the California Solar Initiative.

Other (2%): Legacy costs for nuclear plant decommissioning, electric generation deregulation, and the impact of the 2001-2002 California energy crisis.