An environmental group is calling on LA Mayor Eric Garcetti
to appoint a new Department of Water and Powers general manager who make solar energy a priority.
During his campaign for mayor, Garcetti promised that if elected he would expand LA’s solar rooftop program to bring 1,200 megawatts of solar power to Los Angeles, about 20 percent of the city's electrical needs during the peak summer months. Now, the clean energy group, Environmental California is asking him to make good on his promise.
“Southern California is practically a synonym for sunshine. But here in Los Angeles, we’re still getting less than 2 percent of our power from the sun,” said Emily Kirkland, clean energy associate at Environment California. “Mayor Garcetti showed tremendous vision in calling for 20 percent local solar power by 2020 last January. Now, it’s time for him to make that promise a reality.”
With the departure of embattled DWP’s general manager, Ron Nichols, the group feels this is the perfect chance for Garcetti to follow through on that campaign promise.
“It’s time for Los Angeles to take its place in the sun as a world leader on solar power, and it can only happen with strong leadership from Mayor Garcetti and the next general manager of LADWP,” Kirkland said.
The group has broad support from nearly 100 local businesses, religious leaders, community groups and elected officials, including Venice Councilman Mike Bonin, Councilman Paul Koretz, Congressman Adam Schiff, State Senators Kevin de León and Ted Lieu, and Assemblymembers Bonnie Lowenthal, Jimmy Gomez and Mike Gatto.
According to research from Environment California Research & Policy Center, achieving 20 percent local solar power would cut global warming pollution by more than 1 million tons per year, reduce smog-forming pollution by approximately 730,000 pounds a year, and create an estimated 32,000 job-years of employment.