Landfill Near Joshua Tree Stirs Controversy

Riverside Co., Calif. –- Brimming with controversy instead of trash, the proposed Eagle Mountain Landfill would lie outside Joshua Tree National Park, touch three of the park’s boundaries, and create air, noise and light pollution, according to opponents of the facility. However, the site already has been sold and is ready for construction pending lawsuits. The Los Angeles Sanitation Department would send 20,000 tons of trash per day to the landfill and the county would gain approximately $2.75 to $5 per ton from LA's imports. Also, $1 per ton could be set aside in an environmental trust account to enact a species habitat conservation plan and an additional 10 cents per ton would support Joshua Tree National Park, according to news sources. However, activists are not deterred and have cited 50-year-old laws and environmental studies concerning tortoises to further their point.