Working with SDG&E
Considering a large scale construction project within SDG&E's service area? Understand the steps you need to take to get your project approved and moving. The details for establishing new gas/electric service are in the Checklist for Developers and Builders.
The following documents and letters of permission are often required by governmental agencies prior to issuance of development approvals. These documents state that the developer has resolved issues with SDG&E.
The documents are granted by SDG&E for a processing fee to the developer and are described as follows:
- Permission to Grade Letter
This letter states that SDG&E has reviewed and approved the developers grading plan.
- Land Use Agreement
This document allows for the use of SDG&E’s rights-of-way by the underlying or adjacent fee property owner.
- Signature Omission Letter
This letter states that SDG&E has reviewed a proposed subdivision map but does not wish to provide a signature. (Some Cities are asking for the map to be signed to this affect rather than providing a separate letter)
- Subdivision and Parcel Map Signatures
SDG&E will provide review and signatures for maps that have acceptable joint use language.
- Joint Use Agreement
This document allows for the joint use and occupancy of SDG&E’s easement by other utilities or street dedications.
- Public Utility Letter
This letter is usually requested by a property owner, in compliance with a public agency requirement, to vacate a Public Utility Easement.
- Permission to Enter Letter
This letter allows temporary use of SDG&E easements and properties.
- Quit Claim Letter
This document states that SDG&E no longer needs a particular easement.
Ways to incorporate land uses with SDG&E facilities
Utility corridors are considered major land features. They cannot be hidden or relocated easily. Instead, developers are seeking ways to utilize and integrate utility corridors in the planning designs.
Conceptual uses of easement corridors and official approvals should be discussed with SDG&E’s Real Estate & Facilities Department.
Acceptable secondary uses include:
- Open space and wildlife corridors
- Passive recreational parks
- Parking for commercial, retail and office needs
- Utility, industrial and manufacturing service yards
- Bike, walking and hiking trails
Note: No structures of any type are allowed within easement corridors without written permission. Permission, if granted, is revocable.
Existing SDG&E transmission corridors and properties
Never assume that existing SDG&E properties or transmission corridors are being fully utilized. Most are capable of accommodating additional lines and equipment.
The responsibility for maintaining SDG&E’s easement is often a concern. The simple answer is that it depends on who owns the property.
If we own the property, then it is SDG&E’s responsibility. If it is owned by an individual or private entity and we only have an easement interest, then it is the responsibility of the property owner.
Electric and magnetic fields concerns
SDG&E’s EMF Center is staffed by individuals who are knowledgeable about magnetic field interference with equipment and the on-going research into questions about the possible health effects of 60-hertz power frequency electric and magnetic fields (EMFs).
Our EMF Center is a resource for information in the early planning stages of a project and provides the following services which can help developers stay informed about the issues:
- Information and printed materials regarding published health-science research.
- Magnetic field measurements for developed and undeveloped properties.
- Computer modeling of magnetic fields from SDG&E facilities.
- Information about the California Public Utilities Commission policy regarding magnetic fields.
- Meetings with planners, developers, architects, engineers, designers and school administrators.
Integrity Management System
The Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2002 requires the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration/ Office of Pipeline Safety (PHMSA/OPS) to issue regulations prescribing standards to direct natural gas system operators to establish and implement an integrity management program and conduct a risk analysis of its transmission lines which are typically larger diameter (6”-36”) steel pipe operating at pressures from 400 psig to over 1000 psig.
The statute sets forth minimum requirements for integrity management programs for gas transmission pipelines located in High Consequence Areas (HCAs) or areas in close proximity to a DOT pipeline that contain high population density and/or “identified sites” (facilities housing people with limited or impaired mobility such as hospital, school, prison, recreation areas, etc.). These requirements are incorporated into 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 192, Subpart “O”.
This regulation mandates that we develop and maintain an Integrity Management Plan (IMP) that addresses regulatory requirements. The IMP is a systematic and comprehensive program designed to obtain information on existing transmission pipelines to more effectively allocate resources in the prevention, detection and mitigation activities needed to improve pipeline safety.
Statutory requirements for an integrity program include the following:
- Conducting baseline inspections and reassessment of each covered transmission pipeline segment at specified intervals
- Conducting integrated data analysis on a continuous basis
- Taking actions to address integrity concerns
- Addressing issues raised by PHMSA/OPS
- Conducting inspections in an environmentally appropriate manner
- Providing notification of changes to a program
- Permitting state or OPS agencies access to the risk analysis and integrity management program
- HCA Identification
- Evaluation/ Reassessment
- Threat Identification
- Management of Change
- Risk Assessment and Prioritization
- Quality Assurance
- Development of Baseline Assessment Plan
- Record Keeping
- Conducting Assessments
- Performance Planning/Reporting
- Remediation of Anomalies
- Communications Plan
- Preventive and Mitigative Measures
- Regulatory/Public Interaction
The program requires completion of the baseline assessments for the top 50% risk-ranked transmission lines by December 17, 2007 and the remainder by December 17, 2012.