Following a 2 percent decrease in November, an average residential Southern California Edison customer’s bill will go down another 6 percent.
On December 17, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approved SCE’s 2016 Energy Resources Recovery Account (ERRA) electric procurement cost revenue requirement forecast (Application15-05-007) – an estimate of the budget that the utility will need to supply electricity, which is the main factor in January’s rate decrease.
The forecast of $3.783 billion is approximately $1.008 billion lower than the $4.792 billion1 2014 revenue requirement that is currently reflected in present rates.
These costs are approved annually. SCE generates about 20 percent of its own power and buys the rest through contracts and short-term markets.
“Southern California Edison is working hard to keep rates reasonable for our customers,” SCE President Pedro Pizarro said. “With lower prices forecast over the coming months for energy sources that provide electricity, we’re able to reduce customer bills.”
Part of the January reduction reflects the implementation of an October 22 settlement between the utility and Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited for the San Onofre outages caused by the failures of replacement steam generators. SCE’s customers’ share of the settlement is $312.8 million.
As a result. SCE’s residential customers will benefit next year through increases in the twice yearly climate credits on their April and October bills: Those credits are increasing from $29 twice a year to $38 twice a year.
Another rate change taking effect on January 1 is the commission’s decision authorizing recovery of costs reviewed in SCE’s Test Year 2015 General Rate Case (Application 13-11-003), which includes inspecting, repairing and replacing infrastructure that will make it easier to restore power after an emergency outage in the future. It also funds the people SCE employs, such as the workers who climb the poles to restore electric service in storms and answer customer service calls.
Every three years, the commission reviews a request from SCE for the next three-year spending cycle.
The General Rate Case makes up more than 40 percent of rates for the nearly 14 million people SCE serves. About half of customer rates comes from the cost of energy sources for power. The remaining portion comes from a variety of other factors, such as large transmission projects regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and programs for energy efficiency and to protect low-income customers.