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Illegal Dumping is a problem!

Header photocredit: Andrew Coop
Words by Jamison Lauria & Juan Troncoso, Escondido Creek Land Team

The problem:

These 8 tires and one bagged Christmas tree with snow were collected in a single day by the Land Team along Harmony Grove Road.

Illegal dumping and the accrued litter debris often end up reaching our local watersheds due to stormwater runoff. Trash is a form of water pollution, and the debris can cause problems to local ecosystems, wildlife, and people. Even as environmental awareness grows, illegal dumping is still occurring. Conservancy staff will find furniture, clothing, tires, car parts, household items, and other smaller miscellaneous plastic items.

The accumulation of trash can result in contaminated soil and groundwater, kill native vegetation, alter the natural streamflow, increase fire risk and disease. Wildlife can be harmed by trash debris by being exposed to toxins or directly ingesting them.This month the Escondido Creek Conservancy found over eight tires dumped adjacent to Escondido Creek. Tires contain chemicals and heavy metals (DTSC) such as zinc and the chemical PPD, which are harmful to our local aquatic life. In 2021 California Department of Toxic Substances Control is asking tire manufacturers to explore alternatives to using zinc.

How you can help:

The public can help by purchasing reusable items, participating in local clean-ups, and by properly disposing of their trash.

• Discount Tires will take tires for a low fee. 209 S. Escondido Blvd., Escondido, CA 92025 (760) 741-3801

• Throughout the county you can report illegal dumping by filling out the following form, and emailing the form to [email protected]
If you have any questions please call (858) 565-5173: LEA Solid Waste Complaint Form

• Inside the San Diego city limits you can use the San Diego’s Get It Done app or call the Environmental Services Department at 858-694-7000, Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. After business hours, during weekends, or holidays, call the non-emergency number for the San Diego Police Department at 619-531-2000.

Learn more about the impacts of tires on the environment: