Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

By Liz Miller
Observer Staff Writer 

LA Landmarks Go Dark to Promote Energy Conservation

The Aliso Canyon Gas Leak Reduced Local Energy Supply


August 1, 2016

The Urban Lights art exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art went dark for an hour on Friday.

The lights went out at major landmarks and buildings throughout Los Angeles for one hour on Friday night as part of a promotion aimed at urging Angelenos to conserve energy this summer.

Mayor Eric Garcetti kicked off the campaign calling for energy conservation, with the region expected to face a natural gas supply shortage brought on by a months-long gas leak at Southern California Gas Co.'s Aliso Canyon storage facility.

City Hall, the Urban Lights art exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the LAX Pylons, Central Library, Bank of America Tower, Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles and other locales shut off the lights from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Garcetti said steps will be taken at city facilities to reduce energy usage by 5 percent from the past five year's average usage for the months of August and October. He encourages large employers, universities and commercial buildings to also adopt this target.

Meanwhile, city officials are recommending that residents and businesses join the effort by:

• Unplugging devices once they have been fully charged.

• Setting air conditioners to 78 degrees Fahrenheit.

• Replacing traditional light bulbs with LEDS.

• Washing clothes in cold water.

• Switching off lights in rooms that are not being used.

• Upgrading to appliances designated as Energy Star, or efficient. Old refrigerators can be traded in through the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's refrigerator recycling program.

A public outreach campaign and new incentives will also be rolled out, according to Garcetti, with more information about the programs at and in Spanish at

With increasing heat due to climate change, more residents and businesses crank up their air conditioners while still using energy for lights, appliances, and other needs. This puts a strain on neighborhood power distribution equipment and the entire electricity grid, especially on hot days.

This summer however, we need to reduce energy use even more due to the disastrous Aliso Canyon gas leak. The leak was eventually stopped (after months) but not before it impacted the health and lives of thousands of Angelenos and resulted in the largest methane leak in U.S. history.

There is now a moratorium on new gas injections at Aliso Canyon, the largest gas storage facility in our region, which makes it more difficult for utility companies to maintain power reliability this summer. Gas is not only used in homes and businesses but is also the primary fuel for gas-fired electric power plants in the region, including four LADWP facilities in the City of Los Angeles.

It's a hot summer. We all need to do our part to conserve energy and keep our power grid working smoothly.

It doesn't take much, but it does take all of us.



UCLA's Royce and Powell buildings

L.A. Live

Staples Center


Microsoft THEATER

L.A. Convention Center

The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles

JW Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE

Hilton Los Angeles/Universal City

The Music Center's Plaza globe lights and Mark Taper pool lights

Urban Light at LACMA

City Hall

City Hall East

City Hall South

Van Nuys City Hall

San Pedro City Hall

LADWP Headquarters

LAX pylons

Port of L.A. administrative buildings

Central Library

Venice sign (on Windward Circle)

Griffith Observatory (lights will be dimmed)

Bank of America Tower

Wells Fargo Center

Ernst & Young Plaza

777 Tower

Fig at 7th Retail Center

Gas Company Tower

Figueroa at Wilshire

400 South Hope Street

Two California Plaza

The poisonous Aliso Canyon methane gas leak is one of the causes of LA's energy shortage. This infrared image from the Environmental Defense Fund was taken in December of 2015.

City National Plaza

Citigroup Center

One Wilshire

U.S. Bank Tower

One California Plaza

KMPG Center

South Park Center

Wedbush Center

The Bloc

The Hercules Campus


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