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Sempra's San Diego Gas & Electric is first utility to get FAA drone license

  • Sempra Energy (SRE) is the first utility to win FAA approval for a project to begin testing drones that may someday be used to survey remote parts of its electricity network for wildfires and power failures.
  • SRE's San Diego Gas & Electric, which provides electricity and natural gas to 3.4M customers, plans to use drones to conduct inspections in remote areas that would otherwise be hard to access.
  • Energy companies already have started to experiment with drone technology: Last year, ConocoPhillips flew drones over Alaska’s Chukchi Sea, and earlier this year a BP flight in Alaska was the first FAA-approved commercial drone operation over land.
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