• PG&E Time-Variant Electric Pricing 

    Background 

    In August 2012, the CPUC approved a decision imposing mandatory time-variant pricing programs on PG&E’s small and medium sized business customers, which exceed 500,000, beginning in November 2012.  PG&E’s time-variant pricing will come in two forms:  

    1. Time-of-use (TOU) pricing, in which pre-established electricity rates vary based on the time at which electricity is used, as of November 1, 2012. 
    2. Dynamic pricing, where electricity prices rise significantly and are established 24 hours prior to the calling of high-demand days, as of November 1, 2014. 

    In 2014, customers must take affirmative action to “opt out” of Dynamic pricing rates to TOU rates. 

    ORA Position 

    While ORA believes that time-variant pricing can aid California’s climate change objective, ORA opposed the August 2012 CPUC decision asserting that the CPUC should reduce the risk of customer confusion and rate-shock in implementing the program by: 

    • Gradually transitioning small business customers to the simpler, more understandable TOU pricing on an opt-out basis. 
    • Offering Dynamic pricing as a voluntary program. 
    • Requiring more complex dynamic pricing only when certain customer readiness conditions are met, such as:
      • Customers’ understanding of TOU pricing  
      • A reasonable level of voluntary participation  
      • A low level of customer complaints about TOU pricing 
       

    See ORA's Feb 4, 2011 joint Petition to modify the CPUC’s November 10, 2011 decision.
    See ORA's Oct 31, 2011 Comments on the decision. 

    Current Proceeding Status 

    See the proceeding docket. 

    Other Resources 

    See ORA's Report on Time-Variant Pricing for California's Small Electric Consumers.
    See ORA’s Press Release from Aug 2, 2012.