I happened across this article on the dirtiest cities in America and was dumbfounded to read the list. There are 10 cities listed and the article discusses pollution and water quality. And it specifically discusses Superfund sites that used the best cleaning chemicals in the world to keep their product clean – i.e. Intel. And those chemicals also got into the ground.
December is the time of year living in Reno that I think about the more pleasant climate in the Central Valley in California where I grew up. Yes, there is that nasty pea soup fog that sometimes doesn’t burn off for weeks at a time. I can remember driving down a country road when I was 17 years old between Lodi and Stockton. Ok, my car was “crawling” down the road at 5 mph tops and I nearly hit a cow head-on.
That one downside aside, this time of year it still beats snow and wind chill factors that are often in the teens here in Reno. If I was inside all the time that would be a moot issue. But, I’m outside almost 2 hours a day in those elements. My whining aside Reno actually can have some of most beautiful seasonal weather in the nation. Just to be fair.
After reading that article my gut turned. I drove up and down through the Central Valley as a kid enjoying those crystal clear sunrises and classic California sunsets. We most often never worried about locking our cars. And often the house was left unlocked at night without a second thought. I can remember playing sports outside all the time and literally breathing clean air, life, environment – everything!
Now to read about the retched pollution. And the article doesn’t even mention that the entire Central Valley corridor has some of the worst crime ratings in the nation. The title of the article did have the word “dirty” in it, right? And those cities in the heart of some of the most rich agricultural land in the world have poor water quality? A lot of our food comes from there so that caused me pause for thought.
It makes me sad that the beautiful area of California where I grew up is not the same clean, safe place it was in the 60’s, 70’s and early 80’s. And I do wonder how much of a connection there is from the pollution to the crime rates. Interesting, huh ?