In 2014, Southern California Gas Co. asked state officials for a rate hike to pay for an ambitious, “highly proactive” safety program to test all 229 of its active natural gas injection wells “before they result in unsafe conditions.”
Wells in four storage fields — including its Aliso Canyon facility near Porter Ranch — were deteriorating, the utility warned, and had been leaking more frequently since 2008. The wells posed a risk of “uncontrolled” failure.
The rate hike request is still pending, and along with it, the safety program.
In the interim, the gas company’s warning came true: The failure of one of the Aliso Canyon wells in October released an estimated 5.4 billion cubic feet of natural gas containing methane and noxious odorants.
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