PG&E seeks 12 percent rate hike in 2020 By Reuters

© Reuters. PG&E works on power lines to repair damage caused by the Camp Fire in Paradise

© Reuters. PG&E works on power lines to repair damage caused by the Camp Fire in Paradise

(Reuters) – PG&E Corp (N:) said on Thursday it had requested California’s top utilities regulator for a 12 percent rate hike in 2020 to fund its community wildfire safety program, insurance liabilities, and core gas and electric operations.

The proposal does not request funding for potential lawsuits or claims resulting from the 2017 and 2018 Northern California wildfires, the company said in a filing.

The utility faces regulatory curbs on how much it can charge consumers, restricting its ability to make up for losses through rate hikes.

PG&E had previously forecast a 2019 electric transmission revenue requirement of $1.96 billion, up 9.5 percent from 2018.

While the exact extent of PG&E’s fire-related liabilities remains unclear, the company had previously said its liability could exceed its insurance coverage if its electrical equipment was found to have caused the Camp Fire.

The blaze swept through the town of Paradise and killed 86 people in the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California’s history.

The company also said its estimated undiscounted cost to decommission its nuclear power plants rose by about $700 million due to potential costs related to waste disposal, program oversight and site infrastructure.

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