Costs Climb for Californians Hit Hard by Wildfires

Insurance rates have soared in some of California’s riskiest places, and some insurers are refusing to renew policies. Made worse by climate change, wildfires are adding a mounting financial burden to residents living in a state where taxes are already high and housing costs exorbitant.

Pacific Gas & Electric, which already charges among the highest electricity rates in the country, is requesting that regulators approve an additional charge to customers of $2 billion over the next three years to help pay for wildfire safety improvements and other costs. This is separate from the compensation fund approved last week, which includes more than $10 billion in costs to be borne by customers in the form of a levy on electricity bills for the next decade and a half. And none of this will help pay the tens of billions of dollars in liabilities the company has for past fires where its equipment was involved.

— The New York Times