SDG&E Seeks to Extend Mobilehome Park Utility Upgrade Program
Goal is to install 6,600 additional new meters to enhance safety & reliability
Just months after upgrading utility infrastructure for the 1,000th mobile home park residence, SDG&E is looking to help thousands more. SDG&E recently requested approval from regulators to extend the Mobilehome Park Utility Upgrade Program that professionally installs new gas and electric lines and meters to connect individual mobile homes directly to the utility system. In most mobile home communities, natural gas is delivered to one master meter and then distributed through aging systems that are owned and operated by the mobile home park owner. Switching to SDG&E’s new system increases the safety and reliability of service to these residents and enables consumers to monitor their own natural gas usage to keep costs down.
In 2014, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approved a pilot program for utilities to replace approximately 10 percent of the aging energy distribution systems owned and operated by mobile park owners with new, more reliable gas and electric systems connected directly to individual residences. Under the pilot program, the CPUC selected approximately 3,330 mobile homes in SDG&E’s service territory for conversion. The pilot program is set to end on Dec. 31, 2017.
SDG&E formally requested permission from the CPUC to convert an additional 20 percent of mobile home spaces—which would include about 6,600 homes—to direct utility service over a six-year period, from 2018 to 2023.
“The CPUC’s mobile home park program has been very successful at enhancing safety and reliability of utility service to the 10 percent of the mobile homes selected for the pilot program in SDG&E’s service territory,” said Gina Orozco-Mejia, vice president of gas operations for SDG&E. “It makes sense to expand these safety and reliability benefits to more of our mobile home park communities.
The Smart Meters installed under this pilot program allow customers to monitor their energy usage, and set and monitor savings and conservation goals. Smart Meters can also detect slow gas leaks by spotting unusual increases in gas usage. In addition, mobile home residents have the ability to take advantage of SDG&E’s energy efficiency rebates to save energy and money.
SDG&E requested an expedited schedule that could provide for a final Commission decision in early 2018.