Stop Unsustainable Development of California Salt Flats

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Target: Cargill Inc. & DMB Associates

Goal: Prevent Cargill and DMB from paving over 1400 acres of Redwood City salt ponds connected to the San Francisco Bay.

Agri-business giant Cargill and development company DMB want to pave over 1400 acres of restorable salt ponds in Redwood City, California in order to build luxury homes. Both are out of state companies, Cargill from Minnesota and DMB from Arizona. They hope to add 12,000 housing units to the site to attract 30,000 new residents. Local residents rejected and halted this plan in 2012, but both companies promise to continue future development. Many locals and elected officials would much prefer outside companies to invest money into Redwood City’s ailing downtown economy rather than an environmentally unsound housing development.

Due to the fact that sea levels are expected to rise 20 feet by 2050, new levees would be required when building in wetlands like these salt ponds. This puts pressure on the state of California to provide new infrastructure that would be otherwise unnecessary. Levees are only necessary when the Earth’s natural centers for flood prevention, i.e. wetlands, are destroyed. Moreover, the state government cannot guarantee that a new levee would prevent flooding and erosion from damaging the community in the case of a major earthquake. Lastly, the 30,000 new residents this plan is calculated to attract will overload the existing highway infrastructure, making travel more difficult for existing residents and putting yet more pressure on the state government to unnecessarily spend funds on updating infrastructure. This will also increases local air pollution by adding thousands of new cars to the roads.

The salt ponds are connected to the San Francisco Bay. For the overall eco-system of the Bay to remain healthy, it needs to encompass 100,000 wetland acres. These salt ponds in particular act as nursing grounds for several species of fish and birds. Groups like Save the Bay have worked tirelessly since the sixties to prevent companies from filling the Bay, and to let Cargill and DMB proceed would be a big step in the wrong direction.

Stop Cargill and DMB from paving the Redwood City salt ponds and damaging the ecosystem of the San Francisco Bay.

PETITION LETTER

Dear Cargill Inc. and DMB Associates,

Citizens of the San Francisco Bay and their environmental supporters want you to stop plans to pave over 1400 acres of restoreable salt ponds in Redwood City to make way for a housing development. The project is unsafe, since any levee built in the new community may not protect residents and their homes against earthquakes.

The project is unpopular, as shown by thousands of local residents who rejected the plan in 2012. Finally, the project is environmentally unsound, as it threatens nesting grounds for several species of fish and birds, some of which are endangered, and diminishes the overall ecosystem of the San Francisco Bay, which must encompass 100,000 wetland acres to thrive.

If your companies are committed to corporate responsibility, then you will stop plans to pave the salt ponds in Redwood City.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Chelsea Cooley

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One Comment

  1. We need to protect our wetlands and the wildlife they support. It is much easier to protect existing wetlands than to create new ones. Restore the downtown instead if there is a need for more homes. Higher densities are way more economical.

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