An LA Metro board motion by LA County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and Pam O'Connor requesting that Metro study how to use renewable energy to power LA’s transit lines won unanimous support from the board on Thursday. Supervisor Ridley-Thomas said the goal is to make Metro the transit agency leader in the use of renewable energy, and public speakers pointed out that using renewable energy could save money for Metro.
Move LA had convened several meetings with industry experts about incorporating renewable energy along existing and planned transit corridors over the past several months, and asked Supervisor Ridley-Thomas and Ms. O'Connor to introduce the motion.
Other transit agencies around the world are beginning to use renewable energy, including several cities in the US: Portland, Oregon, has a 70-foot tall array of solar panels at one substation and is putting more solar panels and wind turbines atop posts along rail corridors. The transit authority in Akron, Ohio has installed 432 solar panels, which provide about a quarter of the agency’s energy. The Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District in Oakland has committed to installing solar panels at all facilities, and MARTA in Atlanta was just awarded a $10.8 million federal TIGER grant to construct shade structures containing PV cells over bus stalls.