At shareholders meeting, PG&E pledges continued focus on safety, preparing for future
PG&E is committed to building on its safety and reliability improvements as it lays the foundation for meeting customers' future energy needs, the company said today (May 12) at its annual shareholders meeting.
"We've implemented enormous change across the company, and we're making tremendous strides," said Tony Earley, chairman, CEO and president of PG&E Corporation. "We know we have more work to do, and we are going to do it right. Nothing will take our focus off this commitment."
(Watch a video of Tony Earley's remarks at the annual meeting.)
Earley pointed to several examples of the company's recent progress during the meeting, held at PG&E's Financial District headquarters. He spoke about:
- The new state-of-the-art gas control center in San Ramon, which allows the company to identify safety or reliability issues on the gas system and respond to them faster than ever before
- PG&E's pipeline safety work over the past three years, including hydrostatic pressure testing, pipeline replacement, and new valves that allow for faster gas shut-off during emergencies
- Investments in modernizing the grid — such as devices on power lines to isolate outages and reroute power automatically — which helped PG&E deliver its best year ever for electric reliability in 2013
- Efforts to reform California's rate structure, which could spell relief for some customers who experience high summertime electric bills as early as next month. PG&E President Chris Johns spoke about a number of initiatives under way that lay the groundwork for customers' utility of the future. He said PG&E is building a robust, modern electric grid that can integrate all of the energy innovation that customers want to pursue, such as rooftop solar, electric vehicles and smart appliances
PG&E President Chris Johns spoke about a number of initiatives under way that lay the groundwork for customers' utility of the future. He said PG&E is building a robust, modern electric grid that can integrate all of the energy innovation that customers want to pursue, such as rooftop solar, electric vehicles and smart appliances.
"Safety, reliability and affordability will always be the bedrock for the relationships we have with our customers and the public," Johns said. "Everything we're doing today is about achieving and sustaining leading performance in these fundamentals. We're investing $6 billion a year to make our gas and electric systems among the safest, most modern and most reliable in the country."
(Watch a video of Chris Johns' remarks at the annual meeting.)
Examples of that new technology were on display outside the meeting, such as a cutting-edge 3-D camera that identifies signs of corrosion or dents on the exterior of pipelines. Employees also demonstrated an infrared tool that detects trouble spots on electric circuits so that stressed equipment can be repaired or replaced to avoid outages.
The meeting concluded with the tabulation of shareholder votes for members of the boards of directors of Pacific Gas and Electric Company and its holding company, PG&E Corporation. All board members, with the exception of retiring director Lee Cox, were re-elected for a one-year term. Shareholders also ratified the re-appointment of the companies' independent registered public accounting firm, Deloitte & Touche LLP.