No river in the American West has been more neglected than the Los Angeles River. Nearly the entire urban riverbed is lined with concrete, channelizing the river’s natural flow and transforming what was once the region’s lifeblood into a hardened flood channel. Nature and people alike must fight for their respective rights to access and connect with river. As the Los Angeles region works to confront a long history of environmental injustice and grapples with the effects of climate change -- including extensive drought and intense heat waves -- a growing chorus of Angelenos is calling on local leaders to set a new course for the Los Angeles River.
The Los Angeles River traverses 51 miles and weaves through 17 diverse cities from its headwaters in the San Fernando Valley to the Pacific Ocean. Like other urban rivers, it has the potential to provide easy access to nature, green spaces that sequester carbon and produce clean air, cooling shade, ecological habitat and groundwater recharge. However, the County of Los Angeles has embarked on a master planning process for the river that will fall short of these goals. The design of proposed river projects, to be finalized in the near future, will either seal the river’s fate as a concrete channel or unlock her potential as a regenerative source of health and healing.
We demand bold action to revitalize a living Los Angeles River in the face of climate change. Join us as we grow a coalition that calls for the restoration of this urban waterway into a living river.
Please sign our petition to support this Statement of Principles for the Health of the Los Angeles River!
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