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SoCalGas Set Send-Out Record in 2000

SoCalGas Set Send-Out Record in 2000

Indicative of the demands placed on California's aging fleet of in-state natural gas-fired electricity generating plants in the last half of 2000, Sempra Energy's Southern California Gas Co. utility established its all-time sendout record of 1.142 Tcf, eclipsing the previous record year (1991) by almost 100 Bcf.

"Overall, we set more than 30 individual records for gas deliveries and receipts," SoCalGas's head of energy transportation services, Lee Stewart, told utility employees in a report published last month.

Stewart said the nation's largest gas distribution utility had no curtailments for any of its customers - firm or interruptible - which contrasts with its affiliated Sempra utility, San Diego Gas and Electric Co. Curtailments to its largest customers, including merchant electric generation plants have occurred several times on SDG&E's system, during days of all-time peak demand last November and last month.

Electricity demand for SoCalGas prompted its record as the gas-only utility transported nearly half of its supplies to power plants, totaling 521 Bcf, topping a record of 456 Bcf set in 1994. SoCal officials noted that without its efforts keeping the pipelines full California's electricity supply problems could have been even worse.

Richard Nemec, Los Angeles

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