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Navy nears deal to help avoid California power shortages

7:40 PM, Apr 29, 2012   |    comments
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LOS ANGELES (AP) - The Navy is nearing a first-time agreement to reduce electricity use at its sprawling San Diego-area bases, if power runs short in Southern California this summer.

The Navy is San Diego Gas & Electric's largest customer, and the deal is intended to diminish the threat of blackouts while the San Onofre nuclear plant remains offline.

Under the agreement, the Navy would temporarily reduce its energy consumption if supplies get scarce, in exchange for savings on rates. The utility has similar agreements with large industrial customers that can slash demand for power at critical times.

State officials have warned of rotating blackouts this summer in Southern California if a heat wave hits while the ailing reactors remain dark, though activists say adequate reserves are on hand.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Associated Press

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