Wednesday, November 16, 2011

ELP Advisors, LLC :: Sustainable Development Report

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Sustainable Development Report 


Issue #5                                                                                                                                      November 2011

ELP Logo
ELP Advisors works with cities, agencies, stakeholders, foundations and business groups to craft strategies to grow thriving, healthy, vibrant communities. 
Regional Agencies Move on Sustainable Communities Strategies
Federal Bicycle and Pedestrian Funding Spared the Chopping Block, Again
Big Ideas for Jobs
ULI Technical Assistance Panels


Small Steps in Sustainability: Harnessing Kinetic Energy

What do speed bumps and soccer balls have in common? Both can be harnessed to produce energy. Both are examples of how the ingenuity of design can create new clean energy solutions.  

We can all admit that speed bumps are not crowd pleasers, but they do a great job at calming traffic and reducing vehicle speeds. And now, thanks to research by

New Energy Technologies, the kinetic energy expelled when you drive over a speed bump can be harnessed to produce energy.  


Lucky visitors at a circus and gun show in Roanoke, VA watched the  MotionPower speed bumps in action as it powered a small sign. New Energy Technologies has been field testing the speed bumps for over a year, even using a Burger King drive-through.


Similar technology has also been conceived for sOccket-the soccer ball that stores energy during game play and can power small electrical appliances afterwards.  


As noted on the sOccket's website, 1 in 5 people in the world (about 1.4 Billion people) live without access to electricity. sOccket isn't the solution to the to the world's energy problems, but may be the spark that gets us there.  


The website also provides the opportunity for companies and philanthropists to sponsor large scale orders of the balls to the countries of their choice.

See where CicLAvia Began: Take a Tour of Bogota, Colombia

CicLAvia has grown into one of L.A.'s most popular semi-annual events. Now the organizers of L.A.'s biggest block party are providing an opportunity for professionals and enthusiasts to get an exclusive, behind-the-scenes group tour of the first ciclovia in Bogota.  

"If you're passionate about CicLAvia, you won't want to miss participating in the original ciclovia with one of its founders." The tour is designed for Urban Planners, Architects, Art Aficionados, Environmentalists, Historic Preservationists and City Explorers.  

For more details, including pricing, contact Aaron Paley (


January 22-24, Los Angeles, California

VERDEXCHANGE hosts its fifth annual Western States/California Conference and Expo.  VX2012 brings together leading clean and green technology, infrastructure, and sustainable practice market makers - utility executives, manufacturers, financiers, environmental stewards, private and public entrepreneurs, whose leadership and productivity creates and sustains the trillion dollar global, green economy.

VX2012 brings together all sectors of the economy to address evolving market & regulatory challenges and to embrace the opportunities for creating sustainable economic growth.  The range of topics that will be discussed includes:

  • The California Delta - Does it's Restoration & Management Make the Grade?
  • Best Public Policy Practices Driving the Clean Energy/Clean Tech Market
  • Financing Clean Tech:  Show Me the Money!
  • California's Cap & Trade Creates a Carbon Market.  Now what?
  • Government Financial Incentives Driving Green Investment
  • Greening Ports and Logistics
  • From the Pacific Rim (Korea and Japan): The Latest Innovations in Clean Tech

For more information, and to register click here

Plannning Conference

The Next Generation: Near-Zero Natural Gas Vehicles  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Center at Cathedral Plaza

Los Angeles, CA 


SCAG Workshop: Natural Resources and the 2012 RTP  

November 30, 2011 

Los Angeles, CA  


2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Regional Conferences 

Registration for the Los Angeles conference begins on December 2, 2011 


Economic Roundtable Report Launch: Economic and Job Impacts of Water Use Efficiency Investments  

December 6, 2011 

Los Angeles, CA 


Registration for the 11th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth

Registration for the February 2-4, 2012 event in San Diego is now open  


ELP Logo 

 315 W. 9th Street, Suite 1010

 Los Angeles, CA 90015

 Phone: 213-612-4545

 Fax: 213-488-3468 


Progress in California as Congress Kills Sustainable Communities Initiative   

Despite the hundreds of phone calls and letters that poured into Congress supporting the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, the final conference report for the FY2012 minibus, which funds the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), zeros out funds for the Sustainable Communities Initiative


This action eliminates HUD's contribution to the Partnership for Sustainable Communities Initiative, a groundbreaking collaborative effort among HUD, the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency. Meanwhile, the Congressional Supercommittee is coming up on an effective deadline of Monday, November 21, to approve a plan to cut the federal deficit by $1.5 trillion


While Congress focuses on cuts and backs away from cost-effective planning strategies, real action needs to happen now to set the country on a course for stronger, environmentally and economically sustainable growth in 2012.  


We need look no farther than the Golden State for encouraging signs. UC Berkeley's Institute for Research on Labor and Employment recently unveiled 13 big ideas for job creation, many of which do not require federal action to implement.  


And although Congress may be defunding sustainability planning, regional agencies throughout California are adopting Sustainable Communities Strategies that may actually create jobs even as they integrate better land use, transportation and sustainability planning at the regional level.


Finally, undaunted by Solyndra's demise, sustainable market makers continue to focus on opportunities in California to drive green investment and technology. Forward-thinking, pragmatic, action-oriented - we give thanks this year for the indomitable spirit of those innovators who are leading us back to recovery and pray that Congress may learn to follow their lead.


Sincerely yours,


Cecilia V. Estolano | Jennifer LeSar | Katherine Aguilar Perez 

Regional Agencies Move on Sustainable Communities Strategies  

The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) has adopted the 2050 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) - a roadmap of $214 billion in transportation projects to be built over the next four decades. As part of the 2050 RTP, SANDAG also adopted the nation's first Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS). The SCS, a mandated requirement of Senate Bill 375, details how the region will reduce greenhouse gas emissions while planning for a projected population growth of 1.25 million people in the San Diego region. The report seeks to "guide the San Diego region toward a more sustainable future by integrating land use, housing, and transportation planning to create communities that are more sustainable, walkable, transit oriented, and compact."


The Natural Resources Defense Council notes that some of their recommendations were incorporated into the final plans. Most significantly, SANDAG committed to adopt an early action transportation measure and to increase ridership of public transit. According to the  San Diego Union Tribune, other environmental advocates were critical of the SCS because it documents an actual increase in green house gas emissions after 2030. This is, in part, due to a lack of sophisticated modeling technology and population growth data. For example, the report assumes no improvements in fuel or vehicular technology. Fortunately, the 2050 RTP is required by state law to be updated every four years and projections for population growth and green house gas emissions will be modified to reflect current technology and transit demands.


While SANDAG was the first to adopt their 2050 RTP with a Sustainable Communities Strategy, other metropolitan agencies are working on their own regional plans. The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) is in the midst of developing their

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