Update on New Orleans Energy Resource Plan
The fate of New Orleans energy resources is still to be decided. In February 2017, Entergy New Orleans (ENO) requested to temporarily suspend the approval process for its proposal to build a new natural gas power plant in New Orleans East. ENO is required to submit a status report on April 21st to the New Orleans City Council.
New Orleans is one of two cities in the US that regulates its own energy (Washington DC is the other). The Michoud facility, in New Orleans East, was decommissioned in 2016 after operating since the 1950s. The New Orleans City Council needs to make a decision on how to best meet the city’s future energy needs, whether through a new plant as proposed by ENO, or via alternatives including energy efficiency measures, renewable energy sources, and demand response. LPHI and the Alliance for Affordable Energy conducted a health impact assessment (HIA) from 2014-2016 that gathered and synthesized data on the potential health impacts of ENO’s proposed facility. This information was widely disseminated through community partners in affected areas throughout the city and presented to the City Council.
According to Max Richardson, the team’s technical assistance provider, “in collaboration with the New Orleans East community, LPHI’s health impact assessment answered the questions that mattered to residents, and impacted public health in a way that will matter for decades to come.”
Logan Atkinson-Burke, Executive Director at the Alliance for Affordable Energy, added, “LPHI’s work on this HIA was a catalyst for community engagement and development of a collaborative campaign for a better energy future in New Orleans. “
For more information on the HIA, and to access the HIA reports, click here.