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Advocating for Environmental & Economic Justice
The year 2003 marked the 10-year anniversary since the former Naval Air Station Alameda (Alameda Point) was identified for closure under the Base Realignment and Closure Program. However, despite ongoing environmental investigations since 1986 and the gaining of federal Superfund status in 1999, progress at Alameda Point has been slow. Characterization of the contamination continues and many sites are still in the initial stages of the cleanup process. As recently as 2004, new areas of contamination were discovered, leaving residents of Alameda wondering if cleanup will ever be complete.
Since 1993 Arc Ecology has collaborated with other oganizations on the cleanup and redevelopment of the former Naval Air Station:
As part of our efforts to empower community stakeholders and ensure a community voice in the cleanup process, an Arc Ecology staff scientist has been working with the Restoration Advisory Board since it was formed in 1993. Comprised of volunteer members of the community and environmental regulators, the Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) advises the Navy on the cleanup of Alameda Point. Arc Ecology’s staff scientists provide community members with technical assistance by reviewing complex cleanup documents and leading “focus group” discussions to explain important documents and to develop community comment letters. Arc Ecology has also worked with the RAB to attain additional outside technical assistance when cleanup plans for an area of major concern are being prepared. By working with the RAB to achieve a Technical Assistance for Public Participation grant offered by the Navy through the BRAC program, Arc Ecology has enabled more meaningful public participation that has forced a more thorough investigation and cleanup.
Redevelopment of the Naval Air Station in Alameda disproportionately affects the primarily African-American community in the West End of Alameda. The redevelopment process has the potential to de-stabilize or influence this community's exodus from Alameda. Arc Ecology is working with these constituents to help them participate in the City’s planning processes.
Arc provided technical assistance to the Alameda grassroots organization Renewed Hope Housing Advocates, a local organization concerned with the impacts of base redevelopment on West End neighborhoods, where Alameda’s renter and African-American families are concentrated. Arc Ecology's technical assistance supports Renewed Hope in its efforts to contend with a wide range of planning and environmental issues that include traffic, open space, air quality, toxics, and cultural issues that will affect people in the West End and the rest of Alameda.
Arc Ecology submits comments to the appropriate federal, state, and local agencies on the plans for the cleanup and redevelopment of the former Alameda Naval Air Station. Some of the recent comments are available online:
• November 3, 2004, Alameda Point Restoration Advisory Board letter to U.S. Navy on the Draft Final Groundwater Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study Report, Alameda Point Site 25 and Alameda Annex IR-02, Alameda Point, Alameda, California (30KB PDF)
• Arc Ecology's April 2004 Response to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry’s Public Health Assessment for Naval Air Station Alameda (a/k/a Naval Supply Center, Alameda Annex), Alameda, Alameda County, California (40KB PDF)
• Arc Ecology's March 31, 2004, letter to Agency for Toxic Substances Disease Registry (ATSDR) on the Public Health Assessment for Naval Air Station Alameda, Alameda, Alameda County, California (120KB PDF)
• Alameda Point Restoration Advisory Board January 15, 2004, letter to U.S. Navy on Draft Groundwater Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study Report, Alameda Point Site 25 and Alameda Annex IR-02, Alameda Point, Alameda, California (30KB PDF)
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