Southern California Edison Taking Steps to Address Region’s Rapidly Growing Electricity Consumption

August 17, 2006

August 17, 2006

ROSEMEAD, Calif., Aug. 17, 2006 – Southern California Edison (SCE) is taking action on several fronts in response to a directive issued this week by California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) President Michael Peevey addressing Southern California’s future electric needs.

“President Peevey has outlined clear actions to meet the rapidly growing demand for power throughout Southern California,” said Al Fohrer, SCE’s chief executive officer.  “We already have begun work on how we might reach the heightened generation and demand-response goals in his ruling.”

SCE is taking steps to add three types of resources by next summer that the utility could make available, if needed, to the California Independent System Operator, the agency that manages most of the state’s power grid.  These steps include:

* Increasing “Demand Response”

SCE is preparing a CPUC proposal outlining how it will attempt to recruit additional volunteer residential customers for its Summer Discount program, offering customers a discount on their summer bills in return for allowing SCE to interrupt their air conditioner compressor during state or local power emergencies.

Currently, 186,715 SCE residential customers volunteer for this “demand-response” program, receiving summer bill credits ranging from $50 to $200, depending on program features selected.  These participants can provide 390 megawatts* (MW) of load reduction capacity, part of an extensive portfolio of demand-response programs that can quickly reduce demand on SCE’s grid by 1,140 MW.

* Modifying New Generation Plan

SCE released this week formal Request For Offers (RFO) documents soliciting long-term power purchase contract offers by independent power producers.  A revised RFO schedule has been posted in response to the Peevey ruling to allow expedited consideration of potential 2007 generation projects.

This open, competitive solicitation for up to 1,500 MW seeks contracts lasting up to 10 years for new generating facilities that could be online within the next several years.  Initially, SCE’s RFO solicited two types of proposals:  “fast-track” projects that are further along in the development cycle and, therefore, could come on-line prior to August 1, 2010; and for other projects that might need more time to come on-line but could be available prior to August 1, 2013.  A third track is being added in response to Peevey’s ruling, one targeting consideration of new generating projects that could be online by August 1, 2007.

Further information on the RFO is available for download by prospective bidders at http://www.sce.com/EnergyProcurement.

* Adding Small Utility Generation Units

President Peevey’s order calls on SCE to put in place small generators known as “peakers,” designed to start up within minutes in response to an immediate need for additional local or regional generation.  SCE will begin discussions immediately with local government officials regarding potential sites for up to five peaker units each capable of generating up to 45 MW.  These units will provide not only usable power but also local support for the transmission and distribution grid.

The utility will propose installing the units at existing SCE substations or adjacent facilities because these sites offer the needed space, natural gas supplies, and grid interconnections. 

*One MW is enough power to serve 650 average homes at one point in time.

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An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 13 million via 4.7 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.