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Opinion

Readers React: Fossil-fuel power plants are about to go the way of Kodak film

LA Mayor Announces Plan To Abandon Natural Gas Plants In Favor Of Clean Energy
The L.A. Department of Water and Power’s gas-fired Scattergood Generating Station in El Segundo on Feb. 12.
(Mario Tama / Getty Images)

To the editor: Power plants running on fossil fuels, like the three natural gas-burning facilities that Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti decided will not be rebuilt, are about to get their “Kodak moment.”

Just as film photography quickly lost to the rapidly developing digital technology, fossil fuels will not be able to compete with renewable energy. And it’s happening faster than expected.

The major issue on the transition from fossil fuels to renewable sources is the economics. The shrinking cost of producing energy from solar and wind and the falling costs of battery storage will make fossil-fuel-powered plants a lot more expensive than renewable-powered plants.

We don’t need to invest in natural gas plants that will be obsolete in five years.

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Dana Hirsch, Fullerton

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To the editor: What the article fails to inform readers about is the degradation of the environment as a byproduct of lithium battery manufacturing.

Of course, we’ll buy the products from China or India — improving the environment not a bit, while enriching what will become our economic rivals in the not too distant future

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Kip Dellinger, Santa Monica

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To the editor: It is reasonable to ask how Garcetti can replace three gas-fired power plants with renewable energy.

Food and Water Watch asked the same question a year ago. What we found is that for less than the cost of staying on fossil fuels, Los Angles can make the transition to 100% clean, renewable electricity.

The key to this transition is improving how the Department of Water and Power manages electricity. We need DWP to invest in energy efficiency, demand response and battery storage. By focusing on these areas, we can drive down the peak demand for energy and ensure that affordable electricity is available even when the sun is not shining.

Solving climate change is not a question of science or engineering. It is a question of political will, and Garcetti has shown that he is willing to do what is necessary to lead the state and the country toward the clean energy future we need.

Jasmin Vargas, Los Angeles

The writer is a senior organizer with Food and Water Watch.

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