Los Angeles — Anchoring a bold vision to address social and economic disparities across Los Angeles County and drive responsible green policies for the future, county officials unveiled a draft regional sustainability plan at the Los Angeles Business Council 2019 Sustainability Summit held at the Getty Center.  The plan outlines what leaders called a “set of strategies and actions for creating a resilient, inclusive, equitable, and sustainable county.”

The plan was shared with an audience of local business, government and nonprofit leaders and elected officials including State Senators Nancy Skinner and Henry Stern, and City of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.  A series of community meetings will be held to solicit public input before a final plan is submitted to the Board of Supervisors for approval later this year.

“The strategies and actions in the plan address everything from climate change and water management to energy and land use,” said Los Angeles County chief sustainability officer, Gary Gero. “We also tackle transportation, air quality, public health and resiliency concerns for a truly regional vision for the present and future generations of Los Angeles.”

Among the plan’s ambitious goals are reduction of on-road diesel particulate emissions by 100% by 2035, sourcing 80% of water locally by 2045, and achieving carbon neutrality, or net-zero carbon dioxide emissions, countywide by 2050.  Gero said these and other efforts outlined in the plan reflect priorities of residents and, if approved by the Board of Supervisors, would establish a roadmap for building a sustainable future based on a cleaner environment, a stronger economy, and innovation grounded in community equity.

Nationally, countywide sustainability plans are rare.  And with more than 10 million residents and 88 incorporated cities, Los Angeles County is the most populous in the United States — creating significant challenges for comprehensive green plan design.  Through a partnership with BuroHappold Engineering, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the Liberty Hill Foundation, the county convened multiple community workshops that engaged more than 600 stakeholders from nearly 300 organizations for input and solution-gathering.

The resulting plan represents the perspectives of localities and neighborhoods disproportionately affected by environmental hazards and social and economic inequities.

Members of the public are encouraged to provide input on the draft plan. The County has launched a new website, https://OurCountyLA.org, where residents can view the plan and provide feedback online.  Additionally, a series of five community events are scheduled throughout the month of May.