By SDCN Editor
San Diego, CA–Outdoor advocates and environmental leaders will come together this weekend for Wheels on the Watershed: Environmental Justice at the Border, a community bicycling tour reflecting on decades of environmental injustice in the Tijuana River Watershed.
Attendees will explore ten miles of biodiverse terrain in the beautiful Tijuana River Valley, with several pit stops along the route to hear personal accounts and calls to action from activists and community members.
“Wheels on the Watershed tells the story of the water that flows through this region,” says Manuel Belmonte, Program Coordinator for Latino Outdoors. “We listen to the diversity of voices speaking out against pollution and learn how it impacts our lives and the places we love.”
Many San Diegans are familiar with the toxic sewage running through the Tijuana River Estuary, just north of the U.S.-Mexico border. Last year, border beaches were closed for 300 days due to constant pollution flows. Fortunately, solutions to this decades-old environmental catastrophe are within sight. The federal government committed $300 million to border water infrastructure improvements in November 2021, and additional federal, state, and local funding efforts are making progress.
These developments will be discussed during the tour, along with historical context and personal accounts from community leaders on the frontlines of this ongoing environmental crisis. As the largest remaining coastal wetland in Southern California, a healthy Tijuana River estuary would clean the water that flows through it, sequester carbon from the atmosphere, protect against flooding, and provide critical habitat for wildlife.
The tour is in collaboration with Environmental Health Coalition, Outdoor Outreach, San Diego Coastkeeper, San Diego County Parks and Recreation, and Surfrider Foundation San Diego.