PG&E operates 63 hydroelectric facilities in Tier 2 and Tier 3 high fire threat areas, know as “HFTD’s.” Twenty-four of its facilities are in Tier 3, which is the highest fire risk zone possible. “The Rock Creek-Cresta Hydroelectric Project” consists of the Rock Creek and Cresta reservoirs, dams and powerhouses. Cresta is one of PG&E’s Tier 3 hydroelectric facilities. That means it should have been a top priority for enhanced wildfire mitigation inspections, especially in the run-up to fire season. Not to mention, Cresta’s facilities are located in the Feather River Canyon — the same region where the deadly 2018 Camp Fire started.
In the months leading up to the Dixie Fire, however, PG&E wrote a letter to the CPUC admitting that it had “discovered” a mistake in its 2020 Wildfire Mitigation Plan: It had forgotten to include its hydroelectric substations.