Protecting & Preserving the Environment
As the nation’s largest natural gas utility, we are well aware of our responsibility to implement sustainable practices and remain a sound environmental steward. And, we gladly embrace this role.
We are proud to serve a region that places a high priority on environmental issues, with a wide array of organizations dedicated to important causes, such as urban greening, beach cleanups and clean air initiatives.
Among our activities in 2016
Earth Month 2016
For the month of April, Community Relations gave employees the opportunity to get involved at various locations, with more than 220 participants at six cleanup sites.
Here are six events where SoCalGas employees participated with friends/family:
- Bolsa Chica Conservancy
- San Buenaventura State Beach
- Friends of Ballona Wetlands
- Los Angeles River/Arroyo Seco Confluence
- Fairview Gardens
- Ventura Hillside Conservancy
Environmental Champions Initiative
For the second year, we sponsored an Environmental Champions Initiative that solicited grant proposals for innovative projects in the areas of clean energy, air and water and conservation, and awarded 43 grants totaling $560,000. These grants funded urban greening projects, innovative environmental education programs, and clean transportation and renewable gas projects. Some projects of particular interest include:
- DIY Girls Making for Good is a DIY Girls initiative that empowers underserved minority girls to identify and prototype technical solutions to issues they encounter in their communities. This year, DIY Girls are making clean energy solutions for good.
- Special Services for Groups/Asian & Pacific Islander Obesity Prevention Alliance Particulates Matter is an environmental education program with a specific focus on the impact of air quality to a community. We partnered with them again to expand the program to additional community high schools. The program engages youth and community members to study the level of fine and ultrafine particulate matter in the air. Participants created a low-cost air sensor, and then presented results to educate and engage community leaders. Youth met with parents, teachers, and government officials to devise solutions such as: tree plantings, educational workshops, replacing air filters in schools, and much more. The overall goal of the program is the address ever expanding public health concerns of poor air quality through a student-led education and subsequent advocacy campaign.
- MoveLA builds a coalition to identify and champion sources of public funding to support zero emission trucks, trains and infrastructure.
- San Bernardino Valley College Foundation funding for 45% of the cost of a Cummins Westport ISL-G NZ 8.9 liter engine, training set up and related tools for a certificate program to train students on operations, diagnostics, and repair skills for jobs as technicians and shop supervisors.
- Project Clean Air, Inc. funding for intern salary to work with existing L/CNG fleets to add vehicles, establish new L/CNG fleets, increase infrastructure and celebrate success stories
- The Ecology Center constructed a new kitchen classroom with a biogas generator for classes to teach how to bring food from garden into kitchen and create healthy meals using clean energy techniques
Other organizations we support:
- CicLAvia Southeast Cities: More than 200 Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) employees, along with their families and friends, pedaled, skated or walked at CicLAvia’s May 15 community jubilee that connected six southeast cities, including Huntington Park, Walnut Park, South Gate, Florence-Firestone, Lynwood and Watts. SoCalGas had a booth in CicLAvia’s Huntington Park hub, where employees gave out free water bottles and brochures on the company’s energy efficiency and customer assistance programs. They also distributed information on the company’s commitment to clean energy solutions, including supporting natural gas vehicles for the heavy-duty trucking sector.
- Environmental Leadership Academy: SoCalGas is a founding member and supporter of the CSU San Marcos Environmental Leadership Academy. The goal of this program is to inform and engage elected leaders, professionals, students, and community members on issues that are consequential to our region, economies, and environment.
- Pacoima Beautiful Agua University: SoCalGas partnered with Pacoima Beautiful on their signature environmental summer institute, Agua University. The program provides educational workshops focused on environmental and community issues, and includes extensive hands-on field work.
- Mojave Desert Environmental Education Consortium (MEEC): The Mojave Environmental Education Consortium (MEEC) was founded in 2001 and was created to improve the environmental literacy of students, teachers and the community of the Mojave Desert region by actively providing quality educational resources. MEEC was one of the recipients of a $10,000 grant, which will be used to provide a variety of free services and programs to educators in the High Desert. Programs include environmental teacher workshops, environmental essay contests, classroom presentations and environmental science demonstrations and participation at middle and high school career events promoting “green jobs” and green technology in schools.