SLA GC hosts town hall outlining expanded vision for Los Angeles

March 6, 2020

The UCLA Sustainable LA Grand Challenge (SLA GC) hosted a town hall event, “Creating the Los Angeles of the Future: A New Vision for the UCLA Sustainable LA Grand Challenge,” on March 4 at the California NanoSystems Institute auditorium.

In her opening remarks, UCLA Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Emily A. Carter expressed support for SLA GC and the desire for UCLA to do more.  “I think that we can be the lead university that really transforms cities around the world to be sustainable, resilient, equitable and livable,” Carter said.

UCLA launched the SLA GC in 2013 with the long-term goals of achieving 100% renewable energy, 100% local water and enhanced ecosystem health in Los Angeles County by 2050. Since then, state and local governments have made similar commitments on even shorter timeframes. For example, under Senate Bill 100, the state of California will transition to 100% renewable energy by 2045.

Eric Hoek. Photo by Daniel Leibowitz

“The rest of the world has caught up,” Hoek said.

In response, Hoek presented a bold, newly expanded vision for the SLA GC.  “Our vision is to help transform Los Angeles into the world’s most sustainable megacity by 2050,” he said. “That means L.A. will be the most clean, healthy, resilient, equitable and livable megacity, and an example for megacities everywhere.”

Moving forward, Hoek said that transportation, which has historically been part of the SLA GC’s goals for energy, will be elevated into its own category under the expanded SLA GC.

Hoek also introduced the SLA GC staff team and said they will continue to support UCLA by:

-Catalyzing interdisciplinary research and funding

-Connecting UCLA students and faculty to external partners, and

-Creating the next generation of sustainability experts and leaders.

The town hall kicks off a campus-wide engagement process that includes an upcoming panel series, Our Los Angeles, Our Future: Conversations on Sustainability.