PG&E boasted of sustainable practices hours before blast 

In the hours leading up to a massive gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. published a press release lauding its sustainability practices.

PG&E was added to the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes, which are investment products that include shares in companies judged to lead their industries in economic, social and environmental performance, the company said in the Sept. 9 statement.

“We are increasingly adapting our strategies, our operations and our culture to drive positive results across the ‘triple bottom line’ of people, planet and profit,” PG&E chairman Peter Darbee said in the unfortunately-timed statement.

Later in the day, at least four people were killed and nearly 50 homes were destroyed when a 30-inch PG&E gas pipeline exploded beneath San Bruno.

A pipeline safety blitz had been scheduled to begin next year throughout PG&E’s urban service areas in order to meet a nearly decade-old federal pipeline regulations deadline.

Portions of the pipeline that exploded had been identified as dangerous by PG&E and they were scheduled to be replaced in 2013 at a cost of roughly $5 million.

jupton@sfexaminer.com

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