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November 15, 2012


WiLDCOAST Completes Tijuana River Restoration Project in Partnership with Urban Corps
Photo by Paloma Aguirre

A grand total of 26,160 lbs. of ocean-bound trash and 1,206 waste tires were removed from the Tijuana River waterway, preventing detrimental impacts to coastal and marine wildlife and protected areas such as the federally protected Tijuana Estuary and the newly established Tijuana River Mouth Marine Protected Area. WiLDCOAST, through funding from the City of San Diego Storm Water Department, partnered with Urban Corps to conduct this massive trash and tire removal effort in the Tijuana River Valley before heavy winter rains could flush the solid waste to the ocean.  Additional funding for the project was made possible through a grant from the San Diego Foundation.  

“This is a regional problem that requires regional solutions” said Paloma Aguirre WiLDCOAST U.S.-Mexico Border Program Manager, “but until we can achieve concrete binational policy solutions, we must continue our cleanup efforts to remove the trash that impacts the sensitive riparian and coastal ecosystems of the Tijuana River Watershed.”

WiLDCOAST is an international conservation team based in Imperial Beach, committed to conserving coastal and marine ecosystems and wildlife. Through its U.S-Mexico Border Program WiLDCOAST works to protect and restore the pacific shoreline from Rosarito, Baja California to Coronado, California through community stakeholder engagement, environmental stewardship and policy.   

The Tijuana River Restoration Project comes on the heels of the record-breaking 3rd Annual Tijuana River Action Month in which 2,931 volunteers removed 62,464 lbs. of trash from the Tijuana River Watershed between September and October. Over 20 Urban Corps crewmembers participated as volunteers during two of these community-led cleanup events.

“Urban Corps is excited to partner with WiLDCOAST on the Tijuana River Valley Restoration Project,” said Robert Chávez, Chief Executive Officer for the Urban Corps of San Diego County. “This project will go a long way to help mend the fragile eco-system of the Tijuana River Valley while providing green job training and education to Urban Corps’ underserved, low income population.”

Founded in 1989 to serve San Diego’s at-risk youth, the Urban Corps of San Diego County is a certified conservation corps and charter school.