Western datebook: Meet the commissars

Posted on | February 3, 2010 | 4 Comments

STEPPING out of the Kremlin gates tomorrow to give presentations at the G2 Gallery in Venice on their glorious accomplishments will be Jonathan Parfrey, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power board commissioner, and director of LADWP Water Resources Thomas Erb. Some of my best vague acquaintances work for the DWP, but if you think that the Kremlin reference is unfair, try searching Erb’s name on the DWP website and you get exactly one result. For a background article on Parfrey from the LA Times’ best city hall reporter David Zahniser, click here. For a recent story on DWP plans to cover the dry lake bed of Owens Valley with a solar farm, here. To find proof of the department’s much publicized commitment to removing water-hungry and energy-wasting turf, look at the lawn surrounds of its substations. It’s rumored that former general manger David Nahai looks positively life-like in his glass casket, though no word on tours.

*Response of CoR, not G2.


4 Responses to “Western datebook: Meet the commissars”

  1. EmilyGreen
    February 3rd, 2010 @ 11:30 am

    This comment on the proposed solar farm for Owens Valley came via e-mail from a scientist familiar with the region:

    Here’s the problem: solar panels on the lake cost >10X what they would on dry land. Note that the Owens Lake is pretty mucky and there is no way to establish the solar panels, without heroic (costly) effort..The City does not have sufficient funds for a project that would cost way more than it would ever produce in power revenues–at a GRAND scale. State Lands knows this and are unlikely to grant any kind of go-ahead other than a pilot-scale test (50 acres has been discussed). …. Those in charge of lake dust won’t wait for the solar thing to play out and will begin fining the City as of October 1 if they haven’t fixed the next areas that they are mandated to fix. And…the Water and Power Commission has stated that the Department will not place itself in the position of getting fined. Interesting quandary.

  2. Eric Perramond
    February 3rd, 2010 @ 11:35 am

    Oh great – now I have “Der Kommissar” (80s) playing in my head. EPP

  3. hobbes the cat
    February 3rd, 2010 @ 10:50 pm

    Brilliant, and visually brilliant. You should perhaps be running an art gallery.

  4. Joshua
    February 9th, 2010 @ 12:26 pm

    Tell us how you really feel.

    I love this post!

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