Responses for Environmental Justice

1: Does the State’s map of disadvantaged communities correctly capture the disadvantaged communities in Contra Costa County? If not, what should be changed?
name comments tags date
Karen Case from Diablo All county neighborhoods suffer from the ravages to people and their families from alcohol and drug abuse. We all suffer from not enough police because we endure the feelings of not being safe due to theft, theft of our mail boxes, and the trend among youth that acting like a thug on the road and driving dangerously is a "cool" thing to do, and we all suffer from the pollution from the oil refineries. My cancer support group called our county "cancer alley."
07/30/2020
Tandra Eircson from Other Yes, I believe it does.
07/20/2020
RICHARD ESTEVES from Countywide
QUALITY SERVICES CONSERVATION 06/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Yes.
03/10/2020
Anonymous from Other
Martinez 02/11/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Yes
02/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide The Healthy Places Index has a great way to see disproportionate health outcomes, especially the Decision Support Layers (https://map.healthyplacesindex.org/). I think it's more comprehensive than CalEnviroScreen. I recommend also looking at the BAAQMD's AB 617 community maps, and the MTC's Communities of Concern. I would err on the side of being more comprehensive in the assessment of vulnerability, rather than limiting the potential geographies.
02/03/2020
Karen Case no community selected Yes
01/29/2020
Anonymous from Other Probably, though I'm surprised martinez isn't worse.
01/29/2020
Joseph David Dacus from Saranap I think the map is pretty reasonable. It would be more meaningful if the highlighted/listed sites that are greatest impacts/threats were actually LOCATED on the map (seems simple enough...use a numbered star for each). I can easily identify my own neighborhood on the map. It might be useful to be able to ZOOM IN on the maps for better clarity with simple +/- keys or buttons.
Saranap Community Association 01/24/2020
Joe Queirolo from Other This is a silly question without defining what a disadvantaged community is.
Concord 11/22/2019
Brother John from El Sobrante This is not ONLY about poor people and people of color who live near pollution. EJ is also about protecting animals from constant slaughter on our roads.
11/15/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre
Concord 11/07/2019
Anonymous from Other Everywhere in Pittsburg is equally disadvantaged; we're all subject to the emissions from the local industry, the emissions from the crowded roads and freeways, the mercury laden Delta water. Being downwind of a major landfill is also unfortunate, especially as the mitigation funds don't seem to make any appreciable difference to our community.
Pittsburg Delta Wetlands 10/16/2019
Bruce Ohlson from Other
10/03/2019
Marianne Callahan from Contra Costa Centre Yes, but what affects them affects all of us. We all rise when we raise them up.
09/21/2019
Tony from Parkmead Im not sure what the definition of disadvantaged is - but anyone near and downwind of the refineries and chemical plants must suffer from health effects Are there any other unperseptible polutants like radiation from old nuclear waste in Contra Costa? There are environmental impacts from encouraging road traffic rather than cycling and electric scooters
10/30/2019
Anonymous from Other
Pleasant Hill 10/17/2019
Anonymous from North Richmond I would guess this is accurate
10/02/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre yes
09/21/2019
2: What types of environmental injustices are most prevalent in your community and in Contra Costa County as a whole?
name comments tags date
Karen Case from Diablo The project on the Concord Navy Weapons base, proposing more housing, and the proposed project in the Pittsburg Hills are unethical. We do not have the will or money to take care of the schools and streets that we already have. They are in shambles and the roads just keep getting worse. We don't have the water to keep building new homes, or the roads to support more traffic. We don't have adequate staffing of our Fire and Police Departments to support more homes. The wildlife are pressed to the extreme here and what we really want is to take care of what we have and to stop new building and preserve open spaces. This increases quality of life for all and doesn't further stress the citizens who are coping with over-crowded conditions. Stop new building.
07/30/2020
Tandra Eircson from Other The placement of the largest polluters in our most disadvantaged communities - i.e the top 10 polluters are all located in poorer communities. Also, the placement for freeways directly through communities while providing a lack of clean public transportation. For example, 580 and 80 both cut through the middle of Richmond, dividing up the city.
07/20/2020
RICHARD ESTEVES from Countywide
QUALITY SERVICES CONSERVATION 06/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Pollution exposure, lack of public facilities for homeless population, lack of facilities for youth to engage in after school activities.
03/10/2020
Anonymous from Other we need help with managing the effects of these environmental issues, such as refineries, high traffic areas! Education, and understanding of ways to mitigate the effects.
Martinez 02/11/2020
Anonymous from Countywide I think there is a large focus on low-income housing in the Bay Area. But what about moderate housing for people like a teacher or a firefighter. They are often forgotten.
02/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Our low income communities of color live closest to the County's largest sources of industrial, commercial and transportation-based pollution. This is an environmental injustice rooted in historically racist land use decisions.
02/03/2020
Karen Case no community selected No adequate street cleaning, terrible roads being ignored, loitering laws not enforced, dangerous drivers ignored, not enough police.
01/29/2020
Anonymous from Other
01/29/2020
Joseph David Dacus from Saranap They seem to me to be primarily economic related. People with more resources are able to locate in places with fewer industry and thus fewer environmental hazards. Noise pollution from freeways that interconnect the whole county are equal opportunity threats that affect all. Climate affects bring pollutants into our communities from great distances (wildfire pollutants of unknown threats). Packaging waste affects us all, and greater strides need to be taken to address the affects on our landfill sites and our community contribution to ocean pollutants both delivered in an effort to recycle and downstream contribution from waterways.
Saranap Community Association 01/24/2020
Joe Queirolo from Other Poorer folks can afford to live only in environmentally degraded areas. Wealthier folks can afford to live elsewhere.
Concord 11/22/2019
Brother John from El Sobrante El Sobrante is not a rich place. Yet 24/7 we are subjected to ultra-loud motorcycles, ultra-loud trucks, and ultra-loud suped-up passenger cars joy-riding up and down San Pablo Dam Road, at all hours. This is insane! So many kids in the area trying to sleep, so many parents working hard for a better future, and the County CAN DO NOTHING to stop all this senseless, gratuitous noise on the roads. Then, get on SR4 and on a daily basis watch foxes, hawks, turkeys, raccoons, skunks, etc., dead everywhere. The entire road could be covered in fur, there are so many carcasses everywhere on the shoulders. When we will build CRITTER CROSSINGS?
11/15/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre Transportation inequity; many people don't own cars (are transit reliant) yet my community does not provide safe streets to walk or bike, or frequent bus service in many areas
Concord 11/07/2019
Anonymous from Other Our Delta is exceedingly polluted, and the adjoining wetlands have been decimated. The air is fouled by industry and car exhaust, and public transportation is far from being a viable way to get around in Contra Costa.
Pittsburg Delta Wetlands 10/16/2019
Bruce Ohlson from Other +Low air quality. I live in Pittsburg. We are next door to or down-wind of just about every emitter. We have a major 8-lane freeway going right through our community.
10/03/2019
Marianne Callahan from Contra Costa Centre I see that dirty industries are clustered in areas of color and/or low income. I see that low income people are pushed out of cleaner areas by high cost of housing in the cleaner parts of the county. In addition,since rent is lower there, those people have to live further from their jobs which means long days in day care for the kids and too much time sitting in traffic which pollutes and has a negative effect on the quality of lives.
09/21/2019
Tony from Parkmead Air pollution Fire risks Watersheds are not well protected
10/30/2019
Anonymous from Other Air pollution, safe drinking water.
Pleasant Hill 10/17/2019
Anonymous from North Richmond Refineries - we must move to renewables! Make the oil companies invest in non-polluting energy sources
10/02/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre Richmond - Chevron; Martinez = Shell; Pittsburg = Dow Chemical; Concord = Hansen Aggregates
09/21/2019
3: How can industry and neighborhoods co-exist?
name comments tags date
Karen Case from Diablo subject industry to all former EPA laws and inspect them 24/7 to make sure they are not polluting our water, land or air. Decline all new fracking licenses or any other business that has a possibility of pollution. We don't have the water to waste on fracking or any other new buildings. What you lose in property taxes you will gain in tourism if you focus on fixing our disgusting roads and improving landscaping.
07/30/2020
Tandra Eircson from Other Making industry embrace cleaner energy practices, not overburdening poorer locations with polluting industries, ending subsidies for fossil fuels, increase the tax on carbon.
07/20/2020
RICHARD ESTEVES from Countywide
QUALITY SERVICES CONSERVATION 06/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide We must attract industries that have the least environmental impact while providing the greatest economic impact to our communities by encouraging and rewarding those businesses with incentives to "work green". We must also take steps to ensure that the residents in the neighborhoods surrounding these industries are able to benefit from and work for said industries. This is a win-win as it will reduce the carbon footprint created by having people leave their neighborhoods to go to work as well as the fact that their wages will be spent elsewhere if they are forced to commute to work rather than staying local and supporting local businesses.
03/10/2020
Anonymous from Other Education, and work to reduce the effects.
Martinez 02/11/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Clean Air and Clean water standards. Energy Efficiency and renewable energy standards.
02/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide In some cases, industry can adopt newer, cleaner technologies to emit fewer pollutants. Health Risk Assessments can estimate how much a particular neighborhood is impacted by a polluter. If those assessments show insignificant impacts, then industry and neighborhoods can co-exist. Some industries (i.e. fossil fuel) will need to phase out or significantly reduce their production in light of climate change. When that happens, neighborhoods will no longer have to co-exist with them, or the risk from them will be much reduced.
02/03/2020
Karen Case no community selected Stop new building as over population and crowding responsible for lack of social order and quality of life. Use some futures thinking and ethics in decision making. We don’t have the water to keep building . You are agreeing to future rationing and water crisis by continued building and threatening wildlife.
01/29/2020
Anonymous from Other Strict regulation.
01/29/2020
Joseph David Dacus from Saranap Environmental statistics about the industries, and the contribution to those statistics (air/water/runoff/drift/etc.) by industry must be made available on a regular basis, on file/online, so the public may be informed of potential hazards in their environment, and to track progress in addressing concerns. Regular community information meetings should be held by industry and county officials for presentations on efforts to mitigate hazards and to take input from the community. If industry wants the support of the public, they have to provide consistent transparency for the public to make decisions.
Saranap Community Association 01/24/2020
Joe Queirolo from Other Only if strict environmental standards are established and enforced.
Concord 11/22/2019
Brother John from El Sobrante (1) Build Critter Crossings! (2) Enforce noise rules. (3) Develop a strict noise ordinance that starts at $1000 for first offense (loud vehicle), then $5K, then $10K and lose your license for three years, then $20K and lose your license forever.
11/15/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre Strict, enforced regulation of (low) pollutants (remembering that there is currently no known safe exposure level to lead), regulations on light and sound pollution, easy and responsive method for neighbors to voice complaints
Concord 11/07/2019
Anonymous from Other Industry would need to submit to environmental regulations as suggested by relevant authorities with no ties to those industries in question. However, as the largest polluters aren't locally based or have any financial motive to stop their behavior, i'm worried they will continue to try and offset their actions by token community gifts.
Pittsburg Delta Wetlands 10/16/2019
Bruce Ohlson from Other Whenever there is a spare the air day, require the top ten emitters to shut down operations. Allow them to continue operations on a spare the air day by paying a LARGE fine. Increase taxes on vehicles with internal combustion engines. Use the income from these taxes to build a continuous network of bicycle facilities.
10/03/2019
Marianne Callahan from Contra Costa Centre We need cleaner energy. We need to divest and move away from fossil fuels in all of our neighborhoods. We need better, cheaper mass transit to get people out of their cars and improve quality of life.
09/21/2019
Tony from Parkmead Poluting industries should pay the true costs of their polluting and pay clean up costs in advance Local laws should be strict and fines heavy for any transgressions
10/30/2019
Anonymous from Other Industry should pay its share of property tax, for starters.
Pleasant Hill 10/17/2019
Anonymous from North Richmond Get off fossil fuels!
10/02/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre
09/21/2019
4: Do you feel like you have a voice in the County’s decisions regarding land use? If not, what should be changed for your voice to be heard?
name comments tags date
Karen Case from Diablo No, I have no voice. Politicians need to have vision or if they just don't have that type of ability to surround themselves with those who are visionary and futures-thinking. Paper-pushers have there place but if we want to do better, do right, and apply ethics to provide the best possible future scenario then you need people in charge who have integrity and vision. Developers must stop being in charge of our county.
07/30/2020
Tandra Eircson from Other No. I don't feel that individuals have much of a voice at all. Representation on boards should be much more representative of population areas. For example, the last time I attended a CCTA meeting, Richmond and Concord each have one representative - there was no direct representation for Pittsburgh/Antioch. Clayton, Danville, and Orinda all had equal or more representation for decision making than Richmond and Concord, though Richmond and Concord represent far more people. This leads overwhelmingly to policies that support the preferences of the wealthier suburbs over the needs and wants of poorer communities. For example, car pool lanes and freeway expansions are overwhelmingly provided funding over safe streets and increased public transportation.
07/20/2020
RICHARD ESTEVES from Countywide
QUALITY SERVICES CONSERVATION 06/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide yes to some extent.
03/10/2020
Anonymous from Other
Martinez 02/11/2020
Anonymous from Countywide The East Bay Parks can no longer limit use on essential trails that would provide increased biking, especially trails that provide access to Bart and other public transportation.
02/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Yes, because I'm in a position to know what is going on. Many residents are not aware that they have a voice.
02/03/2020
Karen Case no community selected I have no voice. Developers are and the status quote are in charge. Integrity is absent.
01/29/2020
Anonymous from Other More information should be sent out. There should be an easy-for-lay-people-to-understand email list you can join.
01/29/2020
Joseph David Dacus from Saranap I do. I very much appreciate the hard work, over years, by community groups and neighborhood associations, who have come together, cooperated, and collaborated to achieve broad community goals for our portion of the county. The opportunity to contribute comments on application reviews is important and offers the community input into what may be coming in their neighborhood.
Saranap Community Association 01/24/2020
Joe Queirolo from Other My experience with local government is that citizens have little input unless they organize and represent a voting bloc. Individuals are ignored or paid lip service. If a healthy environment was the standard by which all decisions were made, my voice wouldn't need to be heard.
Concord 11/22/2019
Brother John from El Sobrante No, I do not. If the county were serious, it would send notices not only to the OWNERS of properties, but to the residents as well. The residents, who may be renters, never get notice, never get a voice.
11/15/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre Somewhat; staff has been responsive but once it hits decision making body (Board of Supervisors) hits a wall.... Supervisor has historically been uninterested in transportation equity issues, more interested in encouraging private car ownership and driving/polluting
Concord 11/07/2019
Anonymous from Other Not in the least. Our traditionally blue collar community is gradually being replaced by gentrifiers unable or unwilling to live closer to the major hub of business/tech activity, and like with the San Marco development (and other developments profiting unscrupulous developers...), it appears the region is all to willing to admit them at the expense of its current citizens. Our transportation avenues are already beyond capacity, and yet more development is planned on open habitat (and habitat loss is the cause of most flora/fauna extinctions). In addition, the recent fencing in of every open lot in Pittsburg is distressing; our community is starting to resemble a jail enclosure.
Pittsburg Delta Wetlands 10/16/2019
Bruce Ohlson from Other Not really. Enforce the urban limit line! Do not allow any urban limit line changes at all, ever. Share the air pollution with the rich people by requiring zoning for industrial uses in every community shown in green on the map of disadvantaged communities.
10/03/2019
Marianne Callahan from Contra Costa Centre Not enough!! I found this site by accident. I don't see our county asking residents what we would like in the future. I would like to see public surveys from the air quality management and the county explaining our choices and getting our input. There were a few public input meetings on the Climate Action Plan but there wasn't enough outreach and information about the, not enough of them, and they are not in central county.
09/21/2019
Tony from Parkmead I live on the Walnut Creek boundary - County rules seem far more lax than city rules and do not seem to take account of the fact that we are really part of Walnut Creek who need holistic control over their zone
10/30/2019
Anonymous from Other Not really.
Pleasant Hill 10/17/2019
Anonymous from North Richmond The adopted Land Use Plan of 2001 has not even been implemented! We asked for bike lanes for San Pablo Dam Road TWENTY YEARS AGO and this past month the Dam Road was completely resurfaced with NO bike lanes! What good is all this research, huge investment in Plans, etc. when NOTHING gets done? Very discouraging!
10/02/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre No
09/21/2019
5: How can the County help to correct environmental injustices in your community?
name comments tags date
Karen Case from Diablo Stop all new building. Protect what wildlife habitat we have left. People will come just to enjoy open spaces, it's what we all long for, a break from the Rat Race and roads that shatter your bones while driving. We are already over-populated so please stop the madness. We live in a time of climate change that is going to cause hundreds of nearly extinct birds to disappear, including our State bird, the Quail. Our air is polluted enough, we don't have water to plan for future droughts, so please focus on repairing what's wrong in the county, fixing it, and make sure we all live with boundaries and beauty.
07/30/2020
Tandra Eircson from Other My community is overwhelmingly represented as I'm in Orinda. I'd prefer to see environmental injustice addressed in poorer, under-represented communities. I'd like to see a priority taken away from supporting fossil fuels and car transportation to building more walkable communities, complete/safe/slow street initiatives, multiple housing requirements in the largely singled zoned areas of Lamorinda and Danville.
07/20/2020
RICHARD ESTEVES from Countywide Low-income families need to prove they earn less than 200% of federal poverty guidelines to get free weatherization and energy improvements. Contra Costa’s very high cost of living makes it very hard for a significant portion of the County’s economically deprived to meet that one-size-fits-all standard. The California Public Utilities Commission allows some “categories” of households to qualify automatically, such as families living in extreme poverty census tracts. Disadvantaged Communities should be extended the same opportunity, especially considering the highly important factors of environmental injustice and high pollution levels and high general poverty levels in such communities. Contra Costa, despite its relatively high average income levels has numerous Disadvantaged Communities, both inside and outside of incorporated areas.
QUALITY SERVICES CONSERVATION 06/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Make sure their are ordinances in place that require businesses who are moving here to hire locally and adhere to stricter environmental guidelines. Increase/develop training programs to prepare our workforce to take advantage of opportunities for local employment and reduce traffic on our freeways.
03/10/2020
Anonymous from Other
Martinez 02/11/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Work with East Bay Parks to allow more bike and scooter access, including minimal night lighting on the Canal Trail for safety.
02/05/2020
Anonymous from Countywide Enact land use policies that protect communities. Institute buffer zones for all new housing developments near industry. Work with regional agencies to tighten pollution regulations. Participate in the Air District's new AB 617 program. Plan for the transition away from fossil fuel infrastructure, starting now. Provide opportunities for low-income communities to benefit from green energy infrastructure projects, and their adoption of clean energy technologies (EVs, solar panels, EV charging stations, MCE deep green subsidies, etc.)
02/03/2020
Karen Case no community selected Put more funds into rebuilding roads, cleaning up litter, attend to landscaping, hire more police.
01/29/2020
Anonymous from Other Do more to clean up gas station sites, even when they're in use.
01/29/2020
Joseph David Dacus from Saranap The County can provide leadership by presenting areas of interest and problems/issues that need solving, outline potential solutions to be considered and costs associated with these various approaches. Then the community may be given the information needed to involve themselves in making choices that will affect the future of our community.
Saranap Community Association 01/24/2020
Joe Queirolo from Other Make sure healthy environmental standards are established and enforced. I recently moved to Concord from Walnut Creek. The life expectancy in my new zip code is 6 1/2 years less than in my old zip code. Figure out why that is and correct it.
Concord 11/22/2019
Brother John from El Sobrante (1) Build Critter Crossings! (2) Enforce noise rules. (3) Develop a strict noise ordinance that starts at $1000 for first offense (loud vehicle), then $5K, then $10K and lose your license for three years, then $20K and lose your license forever.
11/15/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre See #3 above - regulation, addressing historic redlining issues, building more affordable housing
Concord 11/07/2019
Anonymous from Other Stricter environmental standards, a moratorium on new development until infrastructure catches up, efforts to get native bunch grasses on our hills, efforts to extend the wetlands.
Pittsburg Delta Wetlands 10/16/2019
Bruce Ohlson from Other Stop the Keller Canyon air pollution. Require them to spray water to contain the dust. Transfer oversight of the Keller Canyon Landfill from the County to Pittsburg. Pittsburg is downwind and will do a better job of oversight because we are the victims of the air pollution
10/03/2019
Marianne Callahan from Contra Costa Centre Public surveys, community outreach at community events and libraries, postcards that direct us to surveys to give input. I doesn't seem like our input is being sought.
09/21/2019
Tony from Parkmead Tighter planning controls - similar to Walnut creek
10/30/2019
Anonymous from Other Public Transportation infrastructure would help enormously.
Pleasant Hill 10/17/2019
Anonymous from North Richmond Make the oil companies PAY and switch to renewables
10/02/2019
Anonymous from Contra Costa Centre Better supervision and oversight
09/21/2019