Southern California Gas said the estimated costs associated with the methane leak at its Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility near the community of Porter Ranch, California, hit $1.06 billion at the end of the fourth quarter.
The site is located outside Los Angeles and was the site of the nation's worst methane leak when a well at the storage facility blew out in October 2015. The well was finally capped in February 2016 but not before at least 4.62 billion cubic feet of gas was vented into the atmosphere. In a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, SoCalGas said the cost is up about 1.5% from its $1.039 billion estimate it reported in the third quarter. In its filing, the utility said the "estimate may rise significantly" due to pending lawsuits, possible fines and other costs, adding that costs not covered by insurance or any delays in receiving insurance payments "could have a material adverse effect" on SoCalGas and its parent company, Sempra Energy.