SAN DIEGO — San Diego Gas & Electric is seeking up to $100 million in federal funds to help with wildfire hardening efforts through and around recognized Tribal Nations’ land in the San Diego region, the utility company announced Friday.
The funds that SDG&E have applied for include grants through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnerships program, which is part of the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021.
If awarded, SDG&E said the company would also commit an additional $100 million to match the grants.
According to SDG&E, these funds would help harden approximately 70 miles of SDG&E’s power grid, including 64 miles of power line and six miles of line with covered conductors through 10 of the region’s 17 Tribal communities.
“Our region has the most federally recognized Tribes of any county in the nation, and all are located in areas facing the highest risk for wildfire,” CEO Caroline Winn said in a release announcing the application. “These funds would help us continue to work with Tribes to provide safe and resilient energy in the face of a changing climate.”
SDG&E said they expect to receive notice on the outcome of the application from the DOE sometime this summer.
Should the project be denied, the utility company said it will still move forward with the hardening projects, pending approval on the construction from the California Public Utilities Commission.
After getting this approval from CPUC, SDG&E said that construction would take place between 2024 and 2026.