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JPL, L.A. Mayor Form Partnership

Partnership aims to decrease water usage, greenhouse gas emissions

Published on Monday, July 20, 2009 | 2:44 pm

In an attempt to reduce water usage and greenhouse gas emissions, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory forged a one-of-a-kind, three-year partnership on Monday with the city of Los Angeles and the Department of Water and Power, the nation’s largest municipal utility.

A project created in conjunction with JPL’s managing institution, Caltech, the new partnership is expected to stimulate green job growth while improving clean technology.

“The City of Los Angeles, JPL and DWP are standing at the forefront of the clean technology revolution that will drive the 21st century economy,” Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said of the new partnership. “This partnership will harness Los Angeles’ unparalleled creative capital and entrepreneurial spirit to develop clean and green technologies that will spur job growth across the board from research, development, construction and finance.”

Villaraigosa was joined by JPL Director Charles Elachi and Los Angeles DWP General Manager David Nahai in signing a memorandum of understanding and making the announcement Monday morning at a ceremony hosted by JPL.

According to the NASA entity, the newly forged partnership will “provide a pipeline for innovative energy and water solutions directly to the DWP (and) serves as an international model for water and energy solutions.”

“We are proud that JPL technology and expertise will be part of this collaboration to help improve energy efficiency and protect our water supply — one of our most precious natural resources,” said JPL director Charles Elachi.

The partnership is expected to result in JPL assisting Los Angeles and DWP in “developing, maturing and deploying innovative technologies to improve energy efficiency, increase the use of renewable energy sources, conserve water and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

According to officials at JPL, the three-year agreement establishes a mutual intent of all the parties involved to collaborate on “developing water and energy efficiency solutions and renewable energy technologies.”

“The agreement we are signing today represents a groundbreaking partnership for developing innovative energy and water solutions to the environmental challenges facing our city and our planet,” said Los Angeles DWP General Manager David Nahai. “Through it we aim to develop real-world solutions based on unparalleled scientific expertise.”

The agreement stipulates for JPL and DWP to collaborate on several studies in the Owens Valley for measuring water levels. It also calls for DWP to build a “Sustainable Technology Demonstration Building” to showcase innovative methods, products and technologies to reduce energy and water consumption and increase renewable energy to the public.

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