The Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District (Great Basin) was awarded the 2015 Award for Excellence in Environmental, Energy and Resources Stewardship by the American Bar Association (ABA).
Great Basin was selected for this prestigious award for its historic achievement in obtaining the largest particulate air pollution control project in American history on the dried Owens Lake bed. By December 31, 2017, dust controls on 48.6 square miles of the lake bed will reduce harmful particulate air pollution by up to 240,000 tons each year.
For more than a century, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s (LADWP) diversion of the Owens River into the Los Angeles Aqueduct has linked the Owens Valley to the City of Los Angeles. These diversions created the dried Owens Lake bed, which was the largest source of dust pollution in the country.
The fine particles of dust are dangerous to public health, especially the children and elderly population. Great Basin has stood firm to address the nation’s most polluted air and with completion of LADWP’s Phase 9/10 dust control project currently underway, air quality will soon be some of the nation’s cleanest.
“On behalf of our communities, we look forward to a new day of cooperation with the City of Los Angeles to protect the health of our communities and environment” said Phill Kiddoo, the Great Basin’s Air Pollution Control Officer. He continued, “Our dedicated staff continue to serve the public with their skillful talent and deserve the majority of the credit for this award.”
The award was presented Friday, October 30, 2015 at the meeting of the ABA Section of Environment, Energy and Resources in Chicago, Illinois.