For decades, a miles-long plume of toxic perchlorate—the main ingredient in rocket fuel—has been creeping through the ground below Rialto and contaminating its water supply. The chemical was discovered 10 years ago, but the city has done little to clean up the mess or get the funding from the companies responsible for the environmental disaster. So far, Rialto residents have paid an estimated $7.2 million for the perchlorate cleanup.
The Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice has been fighting for the various corporations—Black & Decker and Goodrich Corp., among others—to clean up their perchlorate mess for years, or at least to pay for the effort, but with little success.
On Wednesday, the CCAEJ will march to the San Bernardino County Building and demand that the corporations are held accountable for polluting Rialto’s water supply.
The march, lead by 100 Aztec dancers, will also feature Rialto and Colton residents giving testimonials and demanding that the companies who used the perchlorate-leaking industrial site in Rialto over the last 60 years clean up their mess and reimburse Rialto residents for the money they’ve already shelled out to clean up the chemical waste.
Also speaking at the event is Dolores Huerta, who co-founded the United Farm Workers of America with Cesar Chavez. Huerta has committed her life to community involvement and responsible civic action. She’s been arrested over 22 times for participating in civil disobedience activities and labor strikes, organized an effective national boycott—that grape thing a few decades back was hers—and once encouraged an auditorium full of high school students in Tucson to protest attempts by federal lawmakers to crack down on illegal immigration. (Phil Fuller)
“The People’s Hearing Against Pollution: A Call For Justice.” Marchers meet in the Stater Brothers parking lot on Foothill and Acacia. Hearing will be held at the San Bernardino County Building Auditorium, 850 E. Foothill Blvd., San Bernardino; www.ccaej.org. Wed. (march at 5 p.m., hearing at 6 p.m.).