Mayor Garcetti signs series of environmental laws on his last day

LOS ANGELES (CNS) — Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti spent his final hours in office signing a series of new ordinances to phase out oil drilling, prohibit natural gas in new construction and ban Styrofoam and single-use plastics.

“Today, we write a new chapter in building a more sustainable, equitable and just future for all Angelenos,” Garcetti said Saturday. “We are putting communities first and walking lighter on this land.”

One new ordinance declares oil and gas extraction a non-conforming use in the Los Angeles municipal code and aims at phasing out oil drilling.

Another ordinance will require all new buildings starting in April 2023 to be all-electric, with limited exceptions. That would include heaters and cooking appliances. Advocates say the all-electric residences and commercial buildings will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and cost less to build and operate. They say natural gas-burning buildings contain levels of pollution that exceed outdoor allowable standards.

Buildings account for 43% of greenhouse gas emissions in Los Angeles, more than any other sector in the city. Los Angeles has a target of becoming carbon-free by 2035.

Garcetti also signed an ordinance to prohibit the sale and distribution of Styrofoam products. It expands the ban on plastic bags to apparel stores, farmers markets and other uses not covered in the 2014 ban. It also bans single-use plastics at city facilities and events.

Copyright 2022, City News Service, Inc.

Copyright © 2022 by City News Service, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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