Asks for more support on Styrofoam ban

To the Editor:

If McDonalds, Taco Bell, Jack in the Box and most other fast food chains started phasing out polystyrene (brand name Styrofoam) in 1990, why did I find this type of garbage piled along Ballona Creek after the rain in 2010, 20 years later? It certainly attests to the fact that it takes generations to deteriorate.

According to California Integrated Waste Management, 56,000 tons of polystyrene containers, equal to the volume of eight Empire State Buildings, enter the California marketplace every year with much of it tossed to the winds, ending up in oceans, releasing toxic chemicals while degrading.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved an “expanded polystyrene food container” law Sept. 21 disallowing usage by county agencies and concessionaires, including a one-year study to extend the ban to commercial businesses in all unincorporated county areas. Although the ban exempts the county Sheriff’s Department, it is a good first step.

Polystyrene bans already exist in more than 50 California cities, including Santa Monica, San Francisco, Berkeley, Huntington Beach, West Hollywood and Malibu, but pressure to eliminate this product requires all of us to acknowledge its environmental damage. The public should write letters, or phone governmental officials and tell them “Styrofoam must go.”

Bettina Gantsweg, Marina del Rey

Says Marina is scheduled for ‘surgery’ at LCP meeting

To the Editor:

The west side of the Marina is under consideration for major “surgery.” The public should be present at a meeting scheduled Tuesday, Feb. 1 at 500 W. Temple St., Room 381B, downtown Los Angeles, with parking across the street at the cathedral.

Who are the surgeons? – Our county Board of Supervisors, who seem to care more for revenue than for recreation.

This major amendment or “surgery” on the existing Marina del Rey Local Coastal Program (LCP) will allow amputation of three public parking lots to be replaced by 536 apartments on Via Marina, a long five-story commercial building and a parking structure on Panay Way and Holiday Harbor as well as luxury senior apartments on Admiralty Way at Oxford Lagoon.

A 19-story hotel with parking structure and heliport on top is also to be inserted, dominating the Marina and the coastline and setting a precedent for future development.

Long on leases and short on revenue, this decision will probably be taken. It should be opposed by homeowners, condominium owners, renters and boaters before the “court of last appeal,” the California Coastal Commission.

I’m bringing a sign, “No Hotel.” Everyone should bring a sign, indicating his conviction. We cannot allow this operation/decision to be carried out in secrecy with no public opposition.

Lynne Shapiro, Marina del Rey

Says jet fumes ‘overwhelming’ when landing direction changed

To the Editor:

I am a Sunset Park resident on Navy Street and recently, at around 10 a.m., I started smelling gas fumes and wondered if my heater was malfunctioning. I realized, by the loud sound of engines on the west side of Santa Monica Airport, that the planes were landing the other way and that I smelled jet fuel from the planes taking off.

The smell of gas was overwhelming and there was nothing we could do but breathe it. My husband and I left the house at noon and returned around 1:45 p.m. When we pulled into the garage we could smell the jet fumes again. I felt angry that there was no escape from these fumes and recognized that the people who live in the houses on the Los Angeles side of the airport must live with this all of the time.

It is really shocking that nothing is being done to prevent this. We have experienced the fumes on other occasions, but today and one day last week were the absolute worst. Our City Council needs to echo our concerns and hound our federal representatives to take swift action. If this problem can’t be fixed, then Santa Monica must fight hard to close the airport.

Katherine and Robert Newmark, Santa Monica