UNESCO’s 4th World Water Development Report states that water supplies under unprecedented pressure and that 100s of millions of people lack access to clean or enough water. Unfortunately there don’t seem to be any easy solutions or infographics that are very sexy.
Perhaps the most devastating impact of climate change to most American cities are water related. Yes, there is likely to be both increased flooding and droughts as precipitation events become more intense and sporadic. Without water (and with too much) our cities will wither.
The LATimes recently published a story about a possible new use of the Owens Lake Playa – a 616 acre solar power plant. The Owens Lake Playa is a place that I care about and have dedicated a significant amount of time researching and writing about.
Owens Lake seen from Horseshoe Meadow Road
Here is the Op-Ed I submitted to the LATimes to support the project:
It is important to remember that the Owens Lake Playa is an artificial landscape created by the growth of Los Angeles. While the entire Owens Valley is a sublime landscape, it is not a pristine wilderness. As such, the Owens Valley is an ideal location for locating a large concentrating solar energy facility, especially because the transmission capacity already exists and the potential benefit of further reducing the PM10 dust emissions off the Playa.