Southern California is gambling its future power needs on its constant sunshine, wind and the ability of engineers to effectively harness those and other alternative energy sources.
Officials in Pasadena, Anaheim and several other large cities notified the Intermountain Power Agency this week that they would not be renewing their contracts for cheap, coal-fired power.
Those contracts expire in 2027. That leaves the cities two decades to secure the alternative energy sources they’ll need, from wind farms to desert solar power.
”It’s a huge change,” said Mayor Todd Campbell of Burbank, among the cities that decided Tuesday to not renew its contract. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power had already given notice to the Utah-based power agency. Glendale and Riverside also joined the group.
The moves could put the region in the forefront nationally of the commercial use of alternative energy in coming years, but researching and building the infrastructure to replace coal-fired power will be a costly, risky business.