The Tracy City Council just approved construction of more than 1400 new homes in Phase 2 of Tracy Hills. This phase will bring homes even closer to Lawrence Livermore Lab’s Site 300, an open-air high explosives testing facility just down the road on Corral Hollow.

In 1990, the EPA placed Site 300 on its Superfund list as one of the most toxic sites in America. In 2018, Site 300 requested a permit to increase the size of its open-air bomb tests, from 100 pounds to 1,000 pounds per blast.

These detonations will contain more than 100 toxic pollutants. Prevailing winds will blow the contamination over Tracy and the Central Valley, with no pollution controls.

We are still waiting for a permit decision from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. If they approve the permit, the Superfund cleanup of radioactive and toxic materials that have already polluted Site 300’s soil and groundwater will stop at the firing table where these explosions are slated to happen. The Air District is expected to hold hearings on the effects of the bomb blasts.

It is imperative that Tracy Hills and Tracy residents take a major role in stopping these open-air bomb blasts, as there is an enclosed bomb blasting facility in Nevada that can accommodate these tests. Nevada is where these blasts are done now. They should not be moved to Tracy.

Tri-Valley CAREs, a group organized by parents who lived next to the Lab and the pollution created around their homes, is the only watchdog of the Lab and its decisions that affect the health of our community.

I’ve lived in Tracy for years and joined Tri-Valley CAREs 10 years ago. For more information about Site 300 and its plans that will affect your family, go to trivalleycares.org.

Gail Rieger, Tracy

Editor’s note: More information about Site 300 can also be found at https://wci.llnl.gov/facilities/site-300/about-site-300

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