Noah Berger / AP
Pacific Gas and Electric lawyers say a proposal by the federal court to oblige the company to launch a major fire protection program could cost as much as $ 150 billion and the removal of 100 million trees from northern California.
Two weeks ago, Judge William asked Alsup to hire the utility to inspect its entire power grid – nearly 100,000 miles of power lines – to determine the safety of the system and "all the trees that could fall on their power lines, to remove or sow "in order to minimize the power network risk that a dangerous forest fire would be inflamed.
In a lawsuit filed Wednesday, attorneys have stated that the company "agrees with the court that the status quo is unacceptable" and that it "is required to aggressively and rapidly work with state and federal officials for system maintenance and forest fire mitigation measures. "
" But the road to reducing forest fire risk is best not determined by probation conditions, but rather by careful coordination with state and federal regulators, after appropriate consultation with other interested parties the best scientific and technical advice, with a political analysis that takes into account all important but often contradictory social goals, "argued the lawyers.
The proposed arrangement of Alsup would also affect the authority of the California Public Utilities Commission and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which, according to the application, oversee high-performance transmission lines.
Instead, the lawyers say that the company is already working on the safety of forest fires and "does not contradict" working with a court-ordered monitor to monitor and monitor its progress.
In a separate filing, the US attorney's office in San Francisco also expressed doubts about the judge's proposal.
The judge issued his proposal as part of his monitoring of the company's suspended sentence in connection with his conviction for violation of pipeline safety laws. This resulted in a fatal gas explosion in 2010 in San Bruno, California.
PG & E announced last week that it intends to file for bankruptcy after finding it liable for up to $ 30 billion in forest fires in California in 2017 and 2018.
The judge has scheduled a hearing on his proposals for the 30th of January.