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Our newest Greenie of the Month isn’t a person, or a group or a company – it’s a whole city.

The city of Los Angeles in sunny California gets our nod for this month’s award for its recently released sustainability framework.

Now, this framework doesn’t just pay lip service to the notion of a more sustainable future. It’s a heavy-duty, 108-page planning document that explores a whole variety of different initiatives that would greatly benefit the sprawling city’s 3.8 million people.

For travellers, LA is mostly known for its high end shopping, beautiful beaches and Hollywood Stars. But for those with an environmental focus, the city’s deficiencies are equally as famous (or perhaps infamous) including a history of intense water wars, thick pollution, gridlocked traffic and heavy energy consumption.

Under LA Mayor Eric Garcetti's leadership (formerly the city’s chief sustainability officer), here’s how LA hopes to propel their city towards a greener, cleaner future.

Solar and Electric Focus

Solar seems a natural fit for such a sunny city. LA’s main vision for solar is three-fold.

  1. They aim to increase cumulative total megawatts of local solar PV to between 900mW-1,500mW by 2025 and between 1,500mW-1800mW by 2035.
  2. They’ll look to increase cumulative total megawatts of energy storage capacity to between 1,654mW-1750mW by 2025.
  3. They will install at least 1mW on LA Convention Centre Rooftop.

The framework also states that more electric car charging outlets and bike share stations will be added to the city. They’ll also by installing more solar panels on local rooftops and lots (LA has enough rooftop space to hold 5,500mW of solar power).

Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG)

Amongst the city’s most ambitious objectives: a 75 per cent increase in the GHG efficiency of the local economy and reduction in GHGs overall by 60 per cent by 2035. By 2025 they hope to be completely diverted from coal-fired power plants.

An expected $2 billion in private clean tech investments by 2035 is hoped to fuel emission-reducing initiatives like LED street lights, green buildings and solar infrastructure.

Transportation and Housing

Garcetti envisions that 50 per cent of transportation will be by foot, bike or public transport by 2035. They will invest in rail, pedestrian and bike safety, and complete neighbourhoods that provide more mobility options and reduce vehicle kilometres travelled. By 2035, 65 per cent of new housing units built will be within 1,500 feet of public transport.

According to Garcetti, ‘the plan is not just an environmental vision.’

‘By addressing the environment, economy and equity together, we will move towards a truly sustainable future.’

LA is not just dreaming big, but acting on their impressive plans – that’s why they’ve taken out our Greenie of the Month.

Speak to you soon,

Solargain