Molly Peterson Environment Correspondent

Molly Peterson
Contact Molly Peterson

Molly Peterson is an award-winning environment correspondent at Southern California Public Radio.

Molly has reported, edited, directed programs, and produced stories for NPR and NPR shows including "Day to Day" and KQED's "California Report." She was a contributing producer for Nick Spitzer's weekly music program, "American Routes," and reported for "Living on Earth" in the Gulf of Mexico after Hurricanes Katrina & Rita. Prior to joining KPCC, she produced a nationally-distributed radio documentary about New Orleans called "Finding Solid Ground."

A former LA Press Club radio journalist of the year, Molly reported on the faulty pumps installed at New Orleans canals after Hurricane Katrina. That project was a finalist for an Investigative Reporters and Editors award.

Molly worked for NPR American legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg during the Clinton Impeachment.

She studied international politics at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service, and graduated from UC Hastings College of the Law. She is an inactive member of the State Bar of California.

Molly was lucky enough to grow up climbing northern California trees and fishing eastern Sierra waters.

Stories by Molly Peterson

Testimony concludes in lawsuit over 2007 May Day melee

Testimony has concluded in a civil lawsuit three journalists brought against the city of Los Angeles and its police department. The journalists seek to hold the city responsible for police actions during a May Day rally three years ago.

Long Beach grants breakwater study $4 million

The city of Long Beach has agreed to consider what it might take to remove its breakwater. The City Council has approved an agreement to share the cost of that study with the federal government.

Army Corps of Engineers to decide value of Long Beach's $8 million study

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will give word Monday to the city of Long Beach on whether it recommends a study to reconfigure a breakwater near the city’s shores. The study comes with a $4 million price tag.

Community groups put funding together to push solar into low-income communities

As governments strain to increase the use of renewable energy, some neighborhood groups are using federal grants to push solar panels into poor areas. Such a project has sprouted in East Los Angeles.

DWP's long term goals getting a hard look as they shift again

The acting chief of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power appeared before the utility’s board of commissioners to present his vision for its long-term goals. Austin Beutner sees tough tradeoffs ahead.

New LADWP head Beutner wants to sell DWP assets

The interim manager of L.A.’s Department of Water and Power will present his Long-Term Strategic Plan to board members today at 12:30. Austin Beutner had pledged “a new era of transparency, accountability and financial discipline.” (Audio: KPCC’s Molly Peterson has taken a look this morning at Beutner’s plans. Steve Julian asks her why Beutner wants to sell the Department of Water and Power’s headquarters.)

LA city audit: DWP was not in as dire financial hot water

The idea of an energy rate increase for customers of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power sparked a pitched political battle earlier this spring. DWP officials insisted the utility could not complete a planned $73 million transfer to the city without seeking higher rates. Now a new audit from the Los Angeles City Controller's Office concludes that DWP wasn't in the financial jeopardy some of its top executives suggested it was.

PG&E-backed Proposition 16 goes down to defeat

A ballot measure that would limit the ability of local government to get into the electricity business appears to be going down to defeat.

LADWP to roll out its idea of a ratepayer advocate next week

The Los Angeles City Council heard about a new budget from the LA Department of Water and Power today [TUE]. The utility proposes to cut expenses while expanding maintenance and upkeep projects - and to increase customer rates to do it.

LADWP seeks rate hikes to pay for maintenance, infrastructure

Last week the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power said it needed more rate hikes - this time, for the water system. KPCC's Molly Peterson reports this week the utility will explain its new budget.

Even a little pavement does a lot to impact aquatic life in cities, USGS finds

A new study from the U-S Geological Survey finds that urban development may have a deeper impact on aquatic life than previously understood. KPCC's Molly Peterson reports.

SCOTUS stalls money for Arizona "Clean Elections" law; California considers Prop 15

The U-S Supreme Court has decided to weigh in on an Arizona plan for public financing in elections. KPCC's Molly Peterson says voters in California today are casting ballots on a similar plan for the Golden State.

Utilities' market strategies reflected in Prop 16's political debate

The parent corporation of investor-owned utility PG&E has spent major money to support Proposition 16. On Tuesday, California voters will weigh in on the measure that would limit how local governments can expand publicly-owned utilities. KPCC's Molly Peterson has more about what's at stake for PG&E, and for supporters of public power in California.

Debate over the proper role of public power drives Proposition 16

It's one of the most complicated issues on the ballot next Tuesday - but don't let that scare you away. Proposition 16 proposes new restrictions on the way local governments can expand the public utilities they provide. A heated discussion is driving the ballot measure about what kind of energy keeps the lights on, and how much municipalities pay for it.

DWP, acting GM Austin Beutner to release budget

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is supposed to issue its new budget today. KPCC’s Molly Peterson has more on what that means for the utility’s top priorities.