Environment & Science

LA Water & Power officials will present findings to public

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
Los Angeles Department of Water and Power

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After months of public meetings with ratepayers, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will present its findings at 6 p.m. Thursday at its downtown headquarters.

Water and Power officials gave ratepayers a glimpse of the future at their summer meetings when they presented the choices the utility is making about renewable energy, state mandates for slowing climate change and water supplies. DWP says it needs to raise rates to keep its water and power lines and its finances in good condition.

Utility officials also say that getting solar, wind, geothermal and other renewable energy sources online will cost more.

After lobbying efforts led by the Sierra Club and Greenpeace, the utility asked customers whether it should begin to phase out coal power. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa had already promised in his last inaugural address that DWP would do that. Despite the mayor's promise, turmoil and leadership changes at the utility has power officials disinterested in ditching coal altogether. DWP continues to emphasize coal is cheap, perhaps an easier sell in touch economic times.