CV Study Reveals Disparities of East Versus West

Jun. 24, 2013 / By

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IVAN DELGADO/Coachella Unincorporated

EASTERN COACHELLA VALLEY — With its lavish resorts and golf courses, the Coachella Valley is a getaway to some and a retirement home for others. But beyond the shadow of the country clubs and music festivals lies a Coachella Valley that is largely unknown.

“Revealing the Invisible Coachella Valley: Putting Cumulative Environmental Vulnerabilities on the Map,” a report released last week by the University of California Davis Center for Regional Change, shows the cumulative environmental health hazards of living in the Eastern Coachella Valley.

“You can see the east versus west story,” said Jonathan London, principal investigator and primary study author, “where in the west valley, there are much lower levels of environmental hazards, and much higher levels for quality of life, compared to the east.”

While this data seems to state the obvious to those living and working in the ECV, it wasn’t until recently that people outside the area began to take notice of these environmental issues. For example, a storm in September 2012 flooded mobile home parks, including Duroville, and spread the odor of decomposing organic matter from the Salton Sea to Los Angeles.

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Coachella Unincorporated

Coachella Unincorporated is a Youth Media Startup in the East Coachella Valley, funded by the Building Healthy Communities Initiative of The California Endowment and operated by New America Media in San Francisco. The purpose of the project is to report on issues in the community that can bring about change. Coachella Unincorporated refers to the region youth journalists cover but also to the unincorporated communities of the Eastern Valley with the idea to “incorporate” the East Valley into the mainstream Coachella Valley mindset.