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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Program Praised From Sun Valley to Dockweiler Beach

The Los Angeles Stormwater Program recently received kudos for its public education and flood prevention programs. The first award, for public education, was received on January 10 from the Los Angeles Basin Section (LABS) of the California Water Environment Association (CWEA). In addition to the LABS award, the Department of Public Works Bureau of Sanitation was recently recognized by the Los Angeles Council of Engineers & Scientists for Sun Valley Park.

“These awards exemplify the tremendous successes and accomplishments of a significant program that defines the City’s commitment to stewardship of the environment,” says Cynthia M. Ruiz, president of the Board of Public Works. “The Stormwater Program is to be commended for delivering tangible results on major public health and education programs that uphold and advance our quality of life.”

The LABS Public Education award was in recognition of “Kids in Action: Students Tackle Stormwater Pollution”—an expansive public education and hands-on volunteer clean-up program involving Los Angeles area students and youth in a major public-private partnership to combat the adverse impacts of stormwater runoff, pollution, and litter.

On June 6, 2008, the City partnered with the Malibu Foundation for Environmental Education and the California Coastal Commission to coordinate the 15th Annual Kids Ocean Day clean-up at Dockweiler State Beach. The CWEA award was a result of this team effort. “The impact of the message that clean oceans and beaches start with clean neighborhoods has tremendously increased due to the partnership between the City and non-profit organizations,” says environmental educator Michael Klubock of the Malibu Foundation. “This year was a huge success.”

More than 200 volunteers and 3,700 students from 20 Los Angeles-area schools participated in the beach clean up event and organized a massive aerial art display that depicted two children holding up the earth with the words “Kids in Action” surrounding the globe. More than 3,600 pounds of trash were collected. High school students who participated served as mentors for the elementary students, explaining the importance and impact of properly disposing of trash.

Besides the LABS award, on February 19, 2009, the Department of Public Works Bureau of Sanitation was awarded the Project Achievement Award for the Sun Valley Park Multipurpose Project by the Los Angeles Council of Engineers & Scientists. The award was given because of the project’s design, which addresses both flood control and water quality improvement.

The project addresses Sun Valley’s flood-prone past by including settling treatment units, a filtration treatment unit, infiltration basins, and associated conveyance system of pumps, valves and piping to treat flow from a 45-acre tributary drainage area allowing for percolation to groundwater aquifers.

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