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Ask Chris: Water And Power

L.A. utility is full of hot air

Q: I’ve noticed the lights of the DWP building downtown are left on all night. Isn’t that a waste of energy?

A: The 1965 landmark is not only an icon of modern architecture, it’s also an early example of sustainable design. Those fluorescent tubes are moonlighting as a heat source, warming up air that’s then circulated through a ventilation system to the structure’s 17 floors as employees work throughout the day.