Save and Restore the Salton Sea

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The Salton Sea is disappearing. While this loss will undoubtedly affect thousands of species of wildlife, the toxic nature of the sea also poses a genuine threat to human respiratory health. The effects will be widespread and felt not only by local folks, but millions of people who live in Los Angeles, Mexico, and Arizona.

The California Natural Resources Agency together with the Army Corps of Engineers have developed a draft plan intended to manage the negative impacts of harmful dust created by receding water levels.

State officials openly acknowledge they’re running 18 years behind schedule. Residents who routinely endure the dangerous effects of exposed playa have waited long enough for help.

This petition seeks the following:

  1. Pressure Governor Gavin Newsom to accept Imperial County Board of Supervisor’s State of Emergency declaration at the Salton Sea.
  2. Provide communities on the shoreline with emergency resources to improve surrounding water conditions within one year.
  3. Commit to a long-term solution that will improve water quality, lower salinity levels, and restore historic water levels of the entire Salton Sea with a sustainable water source.
  4. Create a civilian oversight committee with members from local communities spanning Imperial County, Riverside County, and Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians to monitor and evaluate projects and spending.
  5. A multi-faceted approach unlike any other—the Salton Sea is not Owens Lake and requires meaningful engineering that will not be solved by settling for covering 30,000 acres (50%) of exposed playa with shallow ponds and gravel berms. There is no guarantee the sea will not recede further due to climate change or influxes in water flow.
  6. Definitively study the effects of Salton Sea playa on the respiratory system and create an easy to access database of all commissioned government backed studies on the sea.
  7. Subsidize the cost of treatment for respiratory or chronic illness linked to the exposure of unhealthy air for residents of Imperial and Coachella Valley, especially those living in conditions of poverty.
  8. Rehabilitate fish and wildlife populations affected by toxic die offs and disappearing habitats.