FORUM: Location not suited for quarry

By DAN BRUNELL -- Temecula | Posted: July 11, 2010
There has been a lot of ink spilled on these pages regarding the proposed Liberty Quarry. Inevitably, people from both sides of this contentious issue invoke the facts. Unfortunately, facts have become malleable tools that can be shaped to fit whatever reality one wishes to pose, so I offer an opinion.
Whether or not the science behind the negative impact of crystalline silica or the diesel exhaust of legions of trucks is accurate, it simply doesn't matter to me anymore. It is clearly wrong to locate an open pit mine in the middle of a wind channel that feeds us with a clean ocean breeze and makes our valley what it is. Just the idea of locating an asphalt plant and rock quarry there and disrupting the wildlife corridor or creating the potential for health risks is enough reason to oppose this project.
As someone who has lived and worked all over this country, I can say that the most visible differences between really nice places to live and not so nice places generally comes down to zoning and landscaping. Cities are like living organisms. Their health and beauty must be proactively protected and maintained, or it will be compromised.
Top-notch cities have residents and leaders who are ever-vigilant when it comes to protecting their communities. They do not allow undesirable businesses to locate in their areas.
This location being so close to Interstate 15 will be a huge benefit for Granite construction because it will cost it less to transport its product to customers in San Diego County. However, there is very little worthwhile benefit to the Temecula Valley, and it could cost us dearly. Why should we sacrifice our quality of life so that Granite Construction can have a more profitable location?
The domestication of plants and animals started about 10,000 to 12,000 years ago. This is what allowed humans to start growing their own food and living in one place instead of living the nomadic lifestyle of their hunter-gatherer forebears. Our primitive ancestors knew enough at that time not to house their livestock upwind of their living quarters. We should all be able to agree with this same logic and know that locating a mining operation upwind of our beautiful valley is a bad idea.
This is far from settled, so please contact your county supervisors and tell them that you do not want a mine in that location. They want the tax revenue, but more so, they want to do what their constituents expect of them.
If we do not work to defeat this, we will go from beautiful wine country to just another smoggy pocket of the Inland Empire.
DAN BRUNELL lives in Temecula.

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