SAN DIEGO — The Port of San Diego is considering a proposal from Mitsubishi Cement Corporation to redevelop a warehouse at the 10th Avenue Marine Terminal in Barrio Logan.
But resident Maritza Garcia says too many are suffering with poor air quality brought on by congestion and pollution from the nearby industry. And now, fears it could soon get worse.
Meli Morales with the Environmental Health Coalition has joined with residents in speaking out against the proposed project.
“It’s going to bring a lot of heavy duty diesel trucks into our neighborhood and it’s already an area that’s overburdened with diesel pollution from heavy truck traffic,” Morales said. “Residents of Barrio Logan and west National City already breathe more polluted air from diesel traffic than 90% of the state. Diesel pollution is responsible for 84% of the cancer risk in those areas.”
The port first heard the proposal from Mitsubishi Cement Corporation more than two years ago. After community backlash, the port directed the company to come up with a new proposal that doesn’t include the use of heavy duty diesel trucks.
But Morales says there’s no indication the company is making changes to reduce emissions such as switching to zero-emissions vehicles.
“To have their project proposal approved by the port as it currently stands would be invalidating the efforts that went into the maritime clean air strategy and would make it really difficult if not impossible for the port to reach their goals of 100% zero emissions vehicles servicing the port by 2030,” Morales said.
It’s unclear when the port will take up the proposal again. Garcia says she and many others in the community will continue to fight back.
“I just want this to be a reminder that we’re not going to stop fighting for what we want to do, which is to have clean air to be able to breathe properly,” Garcia said.
In a statement to FOX 5, Mitsubishi Cement Corporation said in part:
“This is an environmentally clean, electrified project, with an emissions reduction plan and installation of electric infrastructure that will support port and community efforts to decrease local impacts and actually promote an environmentally cleaner port.”
The port was expected to take up the issue next week, but FOX 5 got an update from the port saying discussions continue, but they will not take up the proposal during this month’s board meeting.