September 1, 2020
SAN DIEGO – Today, Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52) released the following statement regarding the announcement of two near-term Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) projects that will take meaningful action towards reducing cross-border pollution coming from the Tijuana River Valley:
“I want to thank EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler for his dedication to addressing this critical, longstanding problem,” Rep. Peters said. “I am also grateful for the enduring advocacy of so many local leaders and partners, including my fellow members of the San Diego congressional delegation, who have been resolute in this fight to clean up the sewage spills that have plagued our region’s coastal communities for decades. Our efforts secured $300 million through the US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement in December to invest in these fixes, and while there is still a long way to go, these two projects will take great steps to improve the environmental and public health crises at our border.”
During an event earlier in the day, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler shared that the federal agency will enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC) to redirect additional water for treatment at the IBWC’s South Bay International Treatment Plant in San Ysidro. The project will involve new design and construction paid for by the EPA.
The EPA is also set to partner with the City of San Diego to fast-track the development and deployment of a permanent solution to better control sediment and trash in Smuggler’s Gulch, just north of the US-Mexico border, while also helping to reduce flood risk for the surrounding communities.
Both will be funded by the EPA’s Border Water Infrastructure Program (BWIP).