Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) announced it has safely completed a five-year, $100 million project to modernize 13-miles of three high-pressure natural gas pipelines to enhance safety and reliability for nearly 375,000 residential and commercial natural gas customers in Carson, city of Los Angeles, county of Los Angeles, Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Redondo Beach, Torrance and other L.A. Gateway Area communities.
“Our natural gas system pipelines are the arteries that keep affordable and clean energy flowing to homes, businesses, hospitals, schools, power plants and other critical facilities throughout Southern California,” said Rick Phillips, senior director of SoCalGas’ Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan. “SoCalGas is committed to modernizing our natural gas system so that we can continue to provide every Southern Californian with the affordable and reliable energy they deserve.”
The pipeline replacement project is part of SoCalGas’ Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan (PSEP), a multi-billion-dollar program that tests and updates the natural gas pipeline infrastructure in Southern California. Since the PSEP program began in 2013, SoCalGas has conducted hydrostatic pressure tests on 94 miles of pipeline, installed 89 miles of new pipe, and installed or upgraded 152 valves to be automatically or remotely controlled throughout its service territory.
The project involved testing and replacing more than 13 miles of large transmission pipelines with state-of-the-art steel piping and upgrading 20 valves along the project’s route. Replacing part of one pipeline segment required boring below the Harbor Freeway. Construction crews relied on technology called horizontal directional drilling to create a small tunnel below that busy freeway to reduce environmental impacts, enhance public safety and energy reliability.
“This investment in our community’s natural gas infrastructure ensures that our residents and businesses will receive safe, reliable natural gas service for home heating and hot water,” said Lula Davis-Holmes, Councilmember for city of Carson.
“Thank you, SoCalGas, for the investment that you made in the Inglewood community and for your efforts to provide your customers with a safe and reliable product and service,” said Ralph L. Franklin, Councilman for city of Inglewood. “Your commitment to keep city officials and city staff members updated on the project’s progress along with your efforts to proactively address the concerns of Inglewood residents insured a relatively smooth project with very little inconvenience and/or disruption. This was a job well done and conducted with great professionalism.”
SoCalGas invests in modernizing its natural gas system to deliver reliable energy while keeping bills affordable for customers. From 2011-2016 the company invested nearly $6 billion to upgrade and modernize its natural gas system and had the second lowest average bills in the nation among gas utilities.
In Southern California, natural gas is the most affordable and reliable option for home and water heating, and for cooking. More than 90 percent of residents use natural gas for heating, hot water, cooking, drying clothes or other uses. In addition, about 60 percent of all electricity generated in California is produced using clean burning natural gas. Generating electricity locally using natural gas helps California avoid importing electricity generated with less desirable fuels like coal.