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Sylmar Residents Don't Want to Live Below a Granite Mine

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Here's a potentially messy story that is just getting started: a local mining company has revived a plan for an aggregate mine in an unincorporated part of the San Fernando Valley north of Sylmar, according to the Daily News. The Sakaida & Sons Surface Mine would remove three million cubic yards of "mostly decomposed granite" from 25 acres at the base of Kagel Mountain in the San Gabriels. Decomposed granite is necessary to make concrete, and supporters argue it will cut carbon emissions that would otherwise result from hauling in materials for the region's housing and infrastructure projects. Supporters also like that "it would also add good jobs, cut carbon emissions and save tens of millions in project costs from having to truck sand and rock from far-away Kern County."

Obviously, neighborhood groups aren't lining up to agree. Opponents are concerned about a surface mine so close to Sylmar, dust and dirt, and a maximum of 115 truck trips a day that would pass by "schools, parks, Los Angeles Mission College and more than 100 homes." Citizens Against Strip Mining in the San Fernando Valley has gathered the signatures of "nearly 1,500 residents" to oppose the project and signs reading "Stop the Strip Mine in Sylmar" have gone up around the proposed mine area. Councilmember Richard Alarcón, whose district borders the mountains, strongly opposes the project.

Before anyone starts chaining themselves to the gates of the property, the project has a long journey to approval. The Saikadas must "verify legal access to his landlocked mountain property. Without access, [they] can't truck gravel down Pacoima Canyon Road." After that, they'll start the environmental review process. Image via Citizens Against Strip Mining
· Planned mine digs up hostility [Daily News]
· Citizens Against Strip Mining in the San Fernando Valley [Official Site]