What’s the real reason they want to bulldoze the only real sliver of wetlands still left in LA, known as  Ballona, 600 acres that are home to so many fragile species including egrets, herons and least terns? How much of it has to do with gasoline interests? Animal rights and environmental protesters charge oil and gas interests have everything to do with this outrageous plan, asserting there are storage wells and gas lines in and around the wetlands that need rejiggering.
large bird flying through wetlands: this is his or her home.

Does this look dead to you? No, the wetlands are alive and thriving and home to more than 200 species of birds! We took this photo walking up to the protest!

 

Molly Basler holds signs with photos of birds who live in the Ballona wetlands

Environmentalist and animal lover Molly Basler holds signs that show some of the many species of birds that call the Ballona Wetlands home. Where would they go? To heaven?

The LA Times reports that more than “2 million cubic yards of dredged or fill material would be repositioned on the project site.” Let’s see… move around millions of cubic yards of material and create about 10 miles of bike paths and trails…. what would be left? Do the math.  Where would the birds and small mammals, who now call that area home, go? To heaven? Reps of the gas industry, or the non-profit groups pushing this plan, are invited on any time to respond. Critics say the claim that this destruction is a “restoration” is the height of double speak. Some pro-development forces claim the wetlands are dying. According to what we see with our own eyes, it is clearly not dying. It is alive and thriving with many species of birds and mammals, many of whom we photographed.
Protesters march outside the entrance to the Ballona Wetlands at Jefferson and Lincoln in Playa del Rey

These protesters are furious and fed up. “It’s an insult to our intelligence to call this catastrophic plan a restoration! Do they think we’re idiots?” That from one of the marchers.

Recently, #JaneUnChained was #LIVE in #PlayaDelRey, where furious protesters denounced the controversial plan, charging that – with mass species extinction such a real threat – to displace so many wild animals is wildly irresponsible. 

Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve

It says it right on the sign: Ecological Reserve. It doesn’t say bike path. The fact is there are plenty of bike paths in the area. Anyone can bike from Santa Monica to Manhattan Beach and back. There are also ALREADY many hiking trails in the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve. In fact, we walked on one to get to the protest. How many paths do you need in 600 acres? 10 miles? Really?

The Los Angeles Times reports the plan would add almost 10 miles of bike paths and walking trails to the area and promoters call that “restoration.” Actually, the word for that is development, not restoration. There are also reportedly plans for a giant parking lot nearby.

duck in water

Many years ago, before the massive development called Playa Vista was built, actor and environmentalist Martin Sheen led a protest on this very spot. Those protesters were told: let us build Playa Vista. We will protect and preserve the rest of the wetlands. But, now…..

Critics say this is selling out the last remaining slice of wetlands in Los Angeles County, California and is a betrayal of all the species who call the wetlands home and who will have nowhere to go! “The last thing we need is more development,” say protestors. Text 69866 and write PLAYA for updates on this campaign! We invite any of the entities or companies promoting this plan to respond at any time. 
trash in the ecologically sensitive area.

By the way, when you bring in too many humans, what do you get? Trash thrown around. That’s what we saw in the area. So, once again, humans want to pave paradise and literally put up a parking lot.. and dump trash.

protesters marching from Playa Vista to the Ballona Wetlands

These protesters marched from Playa Vista to the entrance of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve. Said one: this battle is one we are going to fight with every last breath. They will NOT ruin this oasis of peace and tranquility. Over my dead body.”