Opinion » Letters

Stop griping

San Luis Obispo

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Thank you for the informative article about new sand and gravel mining in the Salinas River. Residents of San Miguel who are opposed to this mining appear to be classic NIMBYs. In living memory the upper Salinas River that runs through San Miguel was a vibrant river. It had steelhead runs, where seagoing trout came up from Monterey Bay to spawn, and there were trout in many tributaries such as the Estrella River. All that is gone due to the water table being lowered by agricultural ground water pumping. For better or worse, modern man has made the Salinas River a river of sand.

It’s a bit dishonest for people in San Miguel to drive on paved roads and gripe about surface mining. The average asphalt paved road is 97 percent mineral, and 3 percent is oil-based asphalt that cements the aggregate in place. If a zoning classification allows a use by right, as the ag zone appears to allow surface mining, then the place to fight an objectionable use is at the General Plan level. If people don’t bother to read the General Plan and educate themselves about government, then it’s hard to be sympathetic when they complain. Ignorance on their part is not cause for support on my part.

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