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The Latest: PG&E Asked In October To Raise Bills Over Fires

PG&E is facing severe financial pressure amid speculation that its equipment may have sparked the Camp Fire and asked U.S. energy regulators last month for permission to raise its customers’ monthly bills. Pacific Gas & Electric Co. told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in October that it wants the increase to harden its system against wildfires and deliver a sizable increase in profits to shareholders. The company says it faces a higher wildfire risk than other utilities and would have trouble attracting investors without a higher profit. The San Francisco-based utility made the request a month before the Camp Fire broke out Nov. 8 in Butte County and became the nation’s deadliest wildfire in 100 years. No cause has been determined, but PG&E reported an outage around when and where the fire ignited.