Mayor unveils goals for Green New Deal

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (Photo by: Wiki Commons)
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (Photo by: Wiki Commons)

LOS ANGELES — Mayor Eric Garcetti unveiled a Green New Deal for Los Angeles April 29, setting aggressive new environmental goals in a range of areas, including electric autos, air quality, trees and public transit.

Garcetti’s plan comes as a national Green New Deal resolution being promoted by some Democrats in Congress sets a goal for the nation to get 100 percent of its power through renewable energy by 2030.

“Politicians in Washington don’t have to look across the aisle in Congress to know what a Green New Deal is — they can look across the country, to Los Angeles,” Garcetti said. “With flames on our hillsides and floods in our streets, cities cannot wait another moment to confront the climate crisis protecting the environment and making our economy work for everyone.”

The Los Angeles City Council earlier this month approved a motion instructing city staff to draft a policy which mirrors the “principles and priorities” of the Green New Deal.

The plan includes a reiteration of some previous commitments, but also sets some new benchmarks, including:

• The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will supply 55% renewable energy by 2025, 80% by 2036, and 100% by 2045, along with big increases in solar energy.

• Sourcing 70% of L.A.’s water locally by 2035.

• Recycling 100% of all wastewater for beneficial reuse by 2035.

• All new buildings will be net zero carbon by 2030, and 100% of buildings will be net zero carbon by 2050.

• Increasing the percentage of all trips made by walking, biking, micro-mobility/matched rides or transit to at least 35% by 2025, 50% by 2035, and maintain at least 50% by 2050.

• Increasing the percentage of zero emission vehicles in the city to 25% by 2025, 80% by 2035, and 100% by 2050.

• Reducing industrial emissions by 38% by 2035, and 82% by 2050.

• Phasing out styrofoam by 2021, ending the use of plastic straws and single-use takeout containers by 2028, and no longer sending any trash to landfills by 2050.

• Planting at least 90,000 trees by 2021.

• Creating 300,000 green jobs by 2035, and 400,000 green jobs by 2050.

• And reducing municipal greenhouse gas emissions 55% by 2025, 65% by 2035; and reaching carbon neutral by 2045.

The plan, which can be viewed at http://plan.lamayor.org, does not include a detailed breakdown of what it might cost on the front end to pull off. But the document includes estimates that by 2050, it would save 1,600 lives, 660 trips to the hospital, and $16 billion in avoided health care expenses each year.

“The Los Angeles Clean Energy Coalition applauds Mayor Garcetti for establishing the Green New Deal in our city,” Andres Ramirez of the L.A. Clean Energy Coalition said. “This is a great day for Los Angeles. [The coalition] commits to helping the city reach its goal of 100% renewable energy by 2045.”

This article originally appeared in the Wave Newspapers

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