The proposed BNSF Southern California International Gateway (SCIG) railyard threatens the health, safety, and quality of life of local residents, students, and workers. BNSF Railway, owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., is planning to construct a huge new rail yard, about 4 miles from the Ports covering sections of Long Beach, Wilmington, and Carson and neighboring residential communities, schools, day care centers, senior centers, and churches. Along with the proposed expansion for the existing Union Pacific Intermodal Container Transfer Facility (UP ICTF), the cumulative impacts from the 3 million containers a year coming to these neighborhoods can be detrimental to the local communities.
Current plans are for containers to arrive at the railyard on a truck traveling from the Ports through the local communities. All of the containers that these yards would handle are heading to destinations more than 500 miles away from the ports, having local communities face the burden of this profiting industry.
The railroad companies and the Ports claim that the SCIG railyard will be “green,” the reality is that the yards will instead add significant air pollution, noise, industrial blight, traffic congestion, and health risks in the local communities. There can be a different vision for our community, with strategies to allow our economy to truly grow green. These approaches render the proposed railyard unnecessary and minimize the negative impacts to the immediate communities.
A community where children can grow pollution free through:
Maximizing On-Dock Rail
Green Jobs for local residents
In May 2013, EYCEJ members & allies attended the LA City Council meeting where the Council was to review the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the SCIG project. Many community residents who live directly next to the proposed site testified in opposition to the project.
Unfortunately, the councilmembers voted in favor of the SCIG. We were disappointed with the City Council’s decision to support a project that exemplifies environmental racism. Building a rail yard next to homes & schools in a community that is already overburdened by pollution also violates California & federal civil rights laws.
Soon after the City Council decided to support the SCIG, EYCEJ, represented by the Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC), invoked the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) mediation process, but our request was denied by BNSF. At that point, EYCEJ decided to go forward with litigation & filed suit.
Community members are currently reaching out to Mayor Garcetti, encouraging him to oppose the SCIG toxic railyard project.
Please visit http://www.lb4health.org for more information regarding the SCIG Toxic Railyard Project.