LA City Council Votes to Shift Power Plant to Green Hydrogen Despite Environmental Concerns

LA City Council Votes to Shift Power Plant to Green Hydrogen Despite Environmental Concerns

The Los Angeles City Council’s Energy, Climate Change, Environmental Justice and River Committee voted 2 to 1 in favor of a $800 million plan that would shift the Scattergood Power Generating Station in Playa Del Rey to green hydrogen. Paul Krekorian, the LA City Council President and member of the Energy Committee, said that this plan is necessary for Los Angeles to meet its clean energy goals by 2025 while having enough power for residents. The Board of Water and Power Commissioners stated that this shift would help LADWP reach its goal of transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy by 2035. However, environmental groups such as Food And Water Watch and The Ballona Institute have voiced concerns over the green hydrogen and believe it will disproportionately impact Black and Brown communities. Paul Koretz voted against the ordinance in committee saying he did not trust SoCalGas’s plans for “green hydrogen”. The Ballona Institute also has concerns about a gas storage facility near the plant and believes it should be removed.

The Impact of Energy on Climate Change and Environmental Justice

Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our time, and energy production is a major contributor to this global problem. According to the International Energy Agency, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions accounted for over 70% of total global greenhouse gas emissions in 2018. This has had devastating effects on vulnerable communities around the world, leading to an increase in extreme weather events, sea level rise, and air pollution. In addition, environmental justice communities are disproportionately affected by climate change due to their lack of access to resources like clean air and water. The World Health Organization estimates that climate change will cause an additional 250,000 deaths per year between 2030 and 2050 due to malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea and heat stress. It is clear that reducing our reliance on fossil fuels is essential for protecting both our planet and its people.
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Picture source: Sharon Pittaway

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