Implementing solutions for Tijuana River to meet Clean Water Act requirements
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Twenty-five to 35 million gallons of raw sewage is pouring into the ocean every day and could keep flowing all summer long.
Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina tweeted Friday about the fluctuating flow rate of the Tijuana River, which could indicate that parts of Mexico are using the river as an open sewer.
Dedina recently told KUSI “this could be the worst round of pollution we have ever seen coming at us. In 2017, we had 250 million gallons spilled, now we have 50 million gallons, a minimum of 50 million gallons every single day.”
KUSI’s Dan Plante spoke to the Director of the San Diego Regional Water Quality Board David Gibson about the board’s simple solution to the Tijuana River sewage crisis, a solution that is long overdue.
This follows the late-January signing of the United States- Mexico-Canada Agreement, which guarantees $300 million to help tackle the Tijuana River Valley pollution crisis.
That money — over four years — will fortify water treatment facilities in the valley, namely the South Bay International Wastewater Treatment Plant. In December, Congress passed a $1.4 trillion federal spending deal that includes $25 million for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Border Water Infrastructure Program, $10 million more than the last year’s allocation.
Transborder pollution from the Tijuana River has contaminated waters and coastlines for decades, forcing San Diego County environmental health officials to regularly close beach access near the border. During that time, local and state officials and environmental activists have called for federal assistance to protect the health of the environment and residents near the border.