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Home / News / Environment / LA Council approves moves toward 100% renewable energy

LA Council approves moves toward 100% renewable energy

City leaders explore options to reach 100% renewable energy
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Two motions were unanimously approved by the Los Angeles City Council Tuesday as part of the city’s effort to transition to 100% renewable energy by 2035.

The city’s goal, adopted last September, was developed after a study by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory found that Los Angeles can achieve 100% renewable energy by 2045 or sooner if it rapidly deploys wind and solar power, electrical storage and other technologies. The study was touted as one of the largest of its kind conducted by the federal government.

As part of the effort to reach that goal, the council on Tuesday unanimously approved two measures spearheaded by Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who chairs the Energy, Climate Change, Environmental Justice, and River Committee:

– One motion directs the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to report on resources needed to modernize the city’s power grid infrastructure to ensure sustainable energy methods are being used. The action, which was co-introduced with Councilman Paul Krekorian, also directs the Bureau of Engineering to analyze the electrical load and upgrades required in preparation to electrify and decarbonize all city buildings and facilities.

– The other, which Krekorian seconded, directs several city departments to report to the council on plans and timelines to end the use and purchase of all gas-powered vehicles, building appliances and equipment. The departments also must identify fully decarbonized locations, facilities or parks and create a plan to electrify and decarbonize all concessionaire partnerships utilized by the DWP, the Port of Los Angeles and the Department of Recreation and Parks.

The motion noted that the city’s power profile includes more than 7,880 gigawatts of total capacity, more than 3,600 miles of transmission lines into the city and more than 10,400 miles of distribution citywide.

The city also owns and manages more than 590 buildings, 16,000 acres of parkland and 400 park sites, and its footprint includes the massive Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles World Airports and the DWP.

The city is “a major purchaser of gas-powered appliances, equipment and vehicles,” according to the motion, which added that the General Services Department is currently processing dozens of requests from the city to purchase gas-powered equipment.

“The city of Los Angeles is creating a carbon-free future and we need to take thoughtful, time-sensitive actions to achieve this as soon as possible. If the city leads by example with public buildings, facilities and purchases, I am confident that the private sector will follow,” O’Farrell said when the motions were introduced.

Krekorian on Tuesday called the moves essential “so we can get to the business of decarbonizing the entire city of Los Angeles.”

Councilman Kevin de León also hailed the motions as essential to ensuring the quality of life in Los Angeles and the region as a whole.

“Even though we’ve had incredible advancements in technologies, we still remain the most polluted city in America when it comes to ozone,” he said. “That’s a reality. … We lose more than 2,500 Angelenos — county, regionwide — on an annual basis due to premature deaths because of what we call smog.”

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