A little over a year ago, Redondo Beach residents voted on a ballot initiative that would have rezoned the area where an outdated and no longer compliant fossil fuel spewing power plant still stands. The rezoning would have insured that no new power plant would replace it.
Much money was spent to confuse the issues surrounding the power plant and, lacking support of key elected representatives, the ballot initiative was narrowly defeated.
The voices of the most credible and powerful elected officials were needed to clarify the matter, but they chose to remain silent. Many residents had been led to believe that their energy needs were dependent upon the operation of the plant and that prices would soar if the rezoning law went into effect-it simply wasn’t true.
So let us clarify now.
The current plant is going to be retired. Their contract is up in 2018 and the State has banned their use of the ocean to cool their operations. The owner of the plant, AES, wants to build a new power plant at the same location.
- The power plant rarely operates and is not required to supply anyone’s power needs.
- The energy produced by the Redondo plant goes to the main grid, it does not stay local, and it does not reduce the cost of power for anyone.
- The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) tracks the pollution generated each year by major polluters such as the AES Redondo plant. They publish this data. Last year, the Redondo power plant emitted 187 tons of carbon monoxide, as well as worrisome levels of numerous other dangerous pollutants.
- If a new plant is built, it will generate less pollution per megawatt generated, but it will run at least 5 times more, releasing many more tons of dangerous pollutants for decades.
I am in strong agreement and support of the Tear Down This Power Plant movement and the No Power Plant organization and its goals. I believe divesting of this fossil fuel burning, polluting, greenhouse gas-emitting eyesore is an immediate priority. We can get the energy we need from energy conservation and renewable energy sources.