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May 20
1946 - Cher, great-granddaughter of Placerita Canyon homesteader Frank Walker and onetime Placerita property owner, born in El Centro, Calif. [story]
Cher and grandma


California State Assemblywoman Pilar Schiavo, D-Chatsworth, announced a significant step towards addressing the severe environmental and public health crisis at the Chiquita Canyon Landfill by formally requesting California Governor Gavin Newsom declare a state of emergency in Los Angeles County.

This request comes in response to ongoing underground chemical reactions within the landfill, which have significantly impacted the surrounding communities since 2023.

Residents of Val Verde, Castaic and students of nearby schools have been subjected to prolonged exposure to harmful emissions, leading to a range of health issues including headaches, nausea, asthma and heart palpitations. A community survey conducted by Schiavo’s office highlights the extent of the crisis, with nearly all respondents reporting direct health impacts.

The Los Angeles County Public Health Department’s declaration of Chiquita Canyon as a public nuisance, along with elevated findings of benzene and carbon tetrachloride, underscores the urgent need for action.

As efforts by the Department of Toxic Substances Control and the Los Angeles Regional Water Control Board continue working to address these issues, the landfill’s containment challenges persist, posing an imminent threat to public health and the environment.

The situation has escalated to the point where the Environmental Protection Agency issued a Unilateral Administrative Order, indicating a significant risk to public health and the environment. While a multi-agency critical action team led by the EPA is working to coordinate a response, the community’s need for support remains pressing. The state’s assistance is crucial for relocation services and additional actions to mitigate the landfill’s impact.

Schiavo’s request for a state of emergency declaration is a call to action to ensure the safety and well-being of our community facing this crisis.

The full request to the Governor can be found here.

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1 Comment

  1. James F Stephens says:

    EPA and federal government must perform 100 % takeover of the landfill , cleanup including removal of dangerous toxins and cap what can remain safely, and end all dump to the site permanently. No other solution is acceptable! Newsom is missing in action!

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