The president of the California Public Utilities Commission has withdrawn from consideration a temporary moratorium on new natural gas hookups in Los Angeles County, according to media reports.
Radio station KNX reported via Twitter that Michael Picker based the decision to remove the moratorium from the agenda of the commission’s March meeting due to a warmer winter and plenty of gas reserves.
The logic behind the moratorium was that the supply of natural gas in Southern California would be constrained by problems at SoCal Gas’s Aliso Canyon facility in Porter Ranch. Limiting new draws on the existing supply of natural gas, especially during the peak winter months, would ensure service for current customers.
“Revised estimates for Aliso Canyon gas reserves, coupled with a warm winter and the City of Los Angeles stepping up its efforts to conserve gas, dissipated the need for a moratorium,” the CPUC told KNX.
The commission had originally planned to vote on the temporary moratorium, which would have expired March 31, at its January meeting. It postponed a vote at the February meeting as well.
The moratorium was opposed by business organizations, including the Valley Industry and Commerce Association in Van Nuys, and the Los Angeles County Business Federation, or BizFed. The groups said a moratorium would negatively affect employment and harm business operations.