REMINDER: Chatham Open House today at 4-8 pm

We know it is a very busy day, but please stop by the Chatham Open House today.  The Installation of the new Mayor and Council will occur at 6 PM but there is still time (before or after) to attend the open house.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. to 8 p.m., located at: California Center for the Arts Escondido (Theater Lobby) 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido

More info here 


Chatham Responds to ENU, Open House on Dec 12th 4-8 PM

DTSC responded to our comment letter.   DTSC_response_ENU_28NOV2018. As usual, we have disagreements with many of their comments.  However, we think it is important that the letter states, “DTSC acknowledges that this remedy has not reached the offsite RAPs sent in the RAP.  We are not there yet.”  On this we agree.

Escondido Neighbors United encourages everyone to attend the DTSC Public Workshop on Chatham Wednesday, December 12, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. to 8 p.m., located at: California Center for the Arts Escondido (Theater Lobby) 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido

ENU will, again, be raising concerns about the failure to monitor all of the required wells, the lack of action on the toe of the plume, and other issues we have raised before.

Further, per this new letter, which states “Before site certification, a final allowable level will be established [for 1,4-dioxane] to ensure that an appropriate risk-based health protectiveness level is achieved.” (DTSC at 5)  We will want to know how that will be done.

Again, we will ask for more appropriate posting of the worst part of the creek and more action to address the releases into the creek.

Last, it states that, “DTSC has not found a ‘silver bullet’ that would have allowed us to reach the RAOs by today”. (DTSC at 2)   To this comment we want to reassure that we are not so unsophisticated to think that a highly complex situation such as this would respond to a simplistic, single action ‘silver bullet’. It will take many actions. Further, we do not see the finding of  these strategies, as DTSC’s job.  It is the job of the PRPs to propose additional actions needed to get us to the RAOs to be reviewed by DTSC.  We will be asking what new and innovative technologies they have proposed to address our site. It is incumbent on them to bring options to the regulatory agencies as they are ‘potentially’ responsible.

But, it is incumbent on all parties to estimate when, if ever, this will be remediated.  We have waited long enough.

The post about our original letter is here.

IMPORTANT Escondido Climate Plan Update WEDNESDAY City Council 4:30 Nov 28

The City Council will hear and update on the Escondido Climate Plan Update.  Please attend if you care about this issue.  Please see the Sierra Club blog for more information here. 

Since it is clear the Escondido will have a new Mayor, Paul McNamara and District 1 Councilmember Consuelo Martinez, this issue should be delayed until they are seated on December 12. 

It will be important to make the following requests:
  1. Given the significant change in leadership in just 2 weeks, the Council should put off any decisions or direction until this issue can be heard by the leaders who will vote on it and will be responsible for implementing it.  The current leaders have made clear that they support ‘the minimum possible’.  Our situation demands much more action than this.
  2. The E-CAP should adopt 100% clean energy as a goal.
  3. The E-CAP should commit to developing a transportation master plan for biking, walking, and transit.
  4. The E-CAP must not rely on out of region mitigation.
  5. The E-CAP must include a social equity element.
  6. The E-CAP must be measurable and enforceable.
The meeting will be held in City Council Chambers at 201 N. Broadway, Escondido City Hall.

Help Felicita Park- Report any Drone that is harassing hawks, help with tree planting event TODAY

We have had reports of a drone harassing hawks and crows in the park.  If you see this drone, please call the sheriff.  One report was that it was associated with some corporate car at the Oak Creek site.

Also, instead of spending money, you can help Green Felicita Park.  The park is planting Sycamore trees at Felicita County Park – part of a program to replant lost trees 3:1 in developed parks – and you’re invited! Plant a tree you can revisit, and watch grow, for years to come. We’ll also be beautifying the creek bed with general maintenance and trash clean-up. Grab some gloves and give back to your community – and plan to get a little dirty! This event is free and all ages are welcome!SPECIAL OFFER: In an exclusive partnership with County Parks, Lyft is offering FREE rides up to $10 to all Green Friday park destinations. Use code: GREENFRIDAY when you book.x

Jewel of Escondido: California Homemades of Escondido, good tasting, good for you, good for the planet

Our most recent ‘Jewel of Escondido’ recognition goes to California Homemades at 138 W. Grand Ave.  California Homemades has many options of delicious lunches and snacks that are fully plant-based.  Here you can have soups, roll-ups, wraps, and lots of other things and protect the climate and animals at the same time.  Plus, eating a more plant-based diet is better for your health.  

So check them out!  Delicious.

Chatham Waste Site Cleanup Open House, Wednesday, December 12th, 4-8 PM

It is somewhat ironic that the same day that we will install a new Mayor and a new Councilmember,  (who actually care about the environment and public health), DTSC will hold their next public open house about the Chatham Barrel Yard waste site.  Please plan to attend if you can.

Important letters have been filed by local organizations.  Please read these before you attend the meeting.

Escondido Neighbors United
Sierra Club North County Group

You can get background info here: 

Chatham Open House:  Wednesday, December 12, 2018
 Please come and join DTSC at a community meeting to be held Wednesday, December 12, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. to 8 p.m., located at: 
California Center for the Arts Escondido (Theater Lobby) 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido, CA 92025

For further information about the upcoming public meeting, and if you require disability meeting access information, please contact the DTSC Project Manager Hossein Nassiri at  (714) 484-5384

ENU Files letter on Chatham Waste Site–Demands more action

This week Escondido Neighbors filed ENU Comment Letter on Chatham Remedy Review August 2018.  The Public Fact sheet is here and the full 5-year Remedy Review Report is here. 

The letter raises many issues about the lack of progress of the cleanup, the failure to stop contamination from entering Felicita Creek, and the need to add treatment wells to stop further expansion of the plumes, among other issues.

If you are interested, please submit comments to DTSC by Sept 6th.  This is a serious issue for our region and one that needs additional action.

If you are new to this issue, here is some background.

Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) has oversight of the remediation
of hazardous waste released to the environment by the Chatham Brothers Barrel
Yard.  As a brief background, members of
the Chatham family owned the property at 2257 Bernardo Ave, Escondido and ran a
hazardous waste processing and collection business for decades. 
the early 1980’s, massive pollution of the site was discovered and the facility
was closed. The Chatham Barrel yard was listed as a state superfund site and emergency
soil removal action was conducted. Additionally, on-site water remediation has
been on-going for over 20 years.
in the intervening decades, the groundwater pollution has spread significantly
and can now be found under Felicita County Park and many area homes.  Further, the contamination is now entering
Felicita Creek in a public area where the public is unwittingly exposed.
spite of over 30 years of remedial action, much of it passive through the
adoption of a passive strategy called ‘natural attenuation’, the cleanup
objectives have not been met.  It is
clear that more proactive measures must be taken.
Neighbors United has filed comments on the
Review.  The requests include that DTSC:
1.      Direct additional
proactive measures to achieve the remedial objectives;
2.      Require additional action
to stop unbated discharges into Felicita Creek;
3.      Require signs at the creek
warning of the presence of pollution in public areas;
4.      Establish and timeline of
performance for meeting the objectives.

More information about this site can be found
here  DTSC Chatham Barrel Yard Link Envirostor