If L.A. is going to stop burning fossil fuels by 2045 a key goal of Mayor Eric Garcetti’s proposed Green New Deal it must store a lot more of the excess solar and wind energy it produces during the day so it doesn’t have to rely on gas and coal energy to power the city when the sun sets and the wind dies. There’s a growing focus on building big batteries — for example, the kind that use lithium ions. But L.A. needs energy storage that is far bigger than any traditional battery.
When you think about Los Angeles water, what usually comes to mind? The shady history of how the complex system came to be? Or maybe it’s the recent headlines about how certain districts in charge of providing water to local communities have been falling short. Regardless, one thing to note is that L.A.’s water system is big and convoluted and we’re going to attempt to scratch the surface. A KPCC/LAist listener asked: Why does the tap water have such high levels of calcium? Is the water like this in all of Los Angeles County? Let’s dig in.
Last year, Downtown Los Angeles got exactly 4.72 inches of rain. That’s measly! It’s smaller than the screen on an iPhone. Less than the length of your sunglasses. Shorter than an average adult hand. And it’s 32 percent of what we normally get. That makes October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018 the third driest year since record-keeping began way back in 1877. Only 2001-2002 and 2006-2007 were worse.