California News

STUDY: California’s Clean Energy Programs Are Mainly Benefiting The Rich

Los Angeles Times-


One lesson from the ongoing uprising against anti-Black racism is that the United States has made far too little progress against rampant inequality. The police killing of George Floyd has brought new attention to the fact that Black Americans breathe dirtier air, are more likely to be homeless and are far more likely to be killed by police, among many consequences of systemic racism.

A new study from a team of UCLA researchers illuminates a different — but related — manifestation of inequality.

Led by Eric Fournier, research director at UCLA’s California Center for Sustainable Communities, the team analyzed energy use data for every ZIP Code in Los Angeles County, home to more than 10 million people. They found that people living in areas more likely to be “disadvantaged communities” — defined by state officials as having high levels of unemployment, poverty, pollution and/or health conditions such as heart disease and asthma — use half as much energy, on average, as people in wealthier areas.

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