SoCalGas technicians
SoCalGas technicians. Courtesy of the company

Sempra’s Southern California Gas division reported Friday it reduced methane gas emissions by 37% last year — passing California’s 20% goal and nearing the 2020 goal of 40%.

The report on methane emissions, which are a key component of climate-warming greenhouse gasses, was submitted to the California Public Utilities Commission.

“It is a testament to our dedicated workforce that we have not only exceeded 2025 reduction goals, but also are quickly approaching 2030 goals as we continue to build the cleanest, safest and most innovative energy company in America,” said Jimmie Cho, SoCalGas chief operating officer.

The company attributed the success to new leak detection technology, including the use of helicopters and drones to spot problems in the natural-gas distribution system.

The calculations of percentage reductions are based upon a 2015 emissions baseline. California utilities’ progress toward the goals is tracked and reported via state-mandated annual reports.

Last year, SoCalGas announced plans to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions in its operations and the energy it delivers by 2045.

The company serves nearly 22 million customers in Central and Southern California.

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.