Stop Greenhouse Gas emissions at Gandara Park in Santa Monica

Stop Greenhouse Gas emissions at Gandara Park in Santa Monica

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Pico Youth & Family Center (PYFC) started this petition to Santa Monica City Council and

We are a group of 8-13 year olds from Pico Youth & Family Center’s (PYFC) Social Justice and Mindfulness Summer Camp in the City of Santa Monica. We have done extensive research and learned that Greenhouse Gases have an extremely harmful effect on the environment.

We are calling for the City of Santa Monica to hold a first ever public hearing to ensure equity, transparency and accountability related to the air quality and safety of Gandara Park and to properly notify park visitors of the former landfill and the existing methane and other greenhouse gas emissions.

Background

This landfill was created due to digging for clay that was used to make bricks. Most of the bricks used to build UCLA came from this clay pit. Once the natural resources were depleted it left a huge hole that City leaders allowed for it be used as a landfill that was filled with industrial waste. In the 1970’s the City of Santa Monica decided to cover up the landfill. In 1975 the City of Santa Monica opened Stewart Park on top of the former landfill.

Problem

From the 1950s through the early 1980s, landfills were usually lined with compacted soil and clay. But that technology was ultimately abandoned because it didn’t prevent leachate from escaping for long. A clay liner even a foot thick will fail within five years. That means that it’s pretty safe to assume that any landfill that began operating with unlined or clay lined cells is leaking toxic contaminants.

Considering that the landfill under Gandara Park was sealed in the 1970’s with compacted soil and clay, we are concerned that toxic chemicals are being leaked into the groundwater and the air exposing families and park visitors to methane and other greenhouse gases. The fact that the City suspiciously removed a water fountain that was between the basketball courts once Pico Neighborhood Association filed a lawsuit for district elections,with no explanation makes one wonder if the drinking water at the park was contaminated for years?

Impacts on Global Warming and Public Health

Methane is one of the main causes of global warming. Methane gets trapped in the earth’s atmosphere and this traps the heat of the sun causing climate change. This endangers all living beings, especially animal life that is threatened with extinction. Also, chronic exposure to methane leads to headaches, bloody noses, asthma and cancer. We should not be exposed to harmful pollution when we play in our public parks.

Solution

There are no placards or notices informing park visitors that Gandara Park is a former landfill and that methane is being emitted. We need more information from the City of Santa Monica that will give us reassurance that the Park is safe for people, especially children who frequently play in the park. We also need an explanation on why the drinking fountain was removed and if it was a health hazard? Moreover, Gandara Park is adjacent to low income families who live in the Mountain View Trailer Park that is also right next to the I-10 freeway. This a clear example of environmental racism and we urge the City of Santa Monica to give us assurances that Gandara Park and the surrounding community is protected from the methane and other environmental hazards that exist in this part of the City. We have seen how the City conducted air quality studies related to the impact of the airport on the community there and we think it’s only fair to do the same in the Pico Neighborhood.

Please sign our petition to demand that the City of Santa Monica protects and informs the public of any potential health hazards at Gandara Park as well as other local parks. 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 200!
At 200 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!