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The Swearin’ o’ the Green



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A few weeks ago, I highlighted how eco-friendly Boulder, Colo., is finding out that it takes a lot of green to go green. Los Angeles is poised to discover the same thing:

DWP rates may rise between 8% and 28% to pay for mayor’s green initiatives   Households that get their power from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power could see their electric bills go up between 8.8% and 28.4%, depending on where they live and how much energy they use, under a plan unveiled Monday by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

Appearing with labor and environmental leaders, Villaraigosa said the proposed increases would ensure that the DWP meets his goal of securing 20% of its energy from renewable sources such as wind and solar by Dec. 31.   Under the plan, households that use the smallest amount of electricity — technically known as Tier 1 customers — would see an average increase of 8.8%. Those customers make up 58% of the DWP’s residential ratepayers.

Tier 2 customers, who use more power and make up 36% of the utility’s residential customers, would see an average increase of 16.8% to 18.9%. Tier 3 customers, who use the most power and make up the remaining 6%, would face hikes in their electric bills of 24.4% to 28.4%, according to documents provided by the mayor’s office.   Businesses would see increases in the average bill ranging from 20% to 26%. Any increase would become less steep, however, once ratepayers adopt conservation measures or find ways to install solar panels and sell the excess power to the DWP, mayoral aides said.

Villaraigosa said the money would help pay for the hiring of “green doctors” to evaluate the energy efficiency of homes and stepped-up efforts to help residents obtain energy-efficient lightbulbs and refrigerators.



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