November 17, 1987
Bruce E. Cannon, Division Administrator
Federal Highway Administration
P. O. Box 1915
Sacramento, California 95809
Thank you for your reply, dated October 6, 1987 and coded HA-CA. I must say that blaming the lack of negative comments for your approving the I-680/Rte 24 project EIS doesn't wash. Somehow I suspect that if the project were to landscape all freeways with marijuana, and you received no negative comments on it, you still wouldn't do it.
The Clean Air Act mandates that you ACTIVELY assure that any project that you approve or fund conforms to the local implementation plan (in this case, ABAG's Air Quality Plan): "The assurance of conformity to such a plan shall be an affirmative responsibility of the head of such department, agency, or instrumentality [of the Federal Government]" (Sec. 176(c)). It is obvious that you haven't done this, or you would know that the EIS produced an erroneous conclusion by falsifying the input data and the computation process. This was done, apparently, in order to make it appear that the project (1) would decrease air pollution in the long run (the year 2010) and (2) would not violate federal air quality standards. Both assertions are, to anyone who thinks about it, patently false.
Mr. Cannon, do you plan to BLANKET California with freeways? If not,
where will you stop? Where do you draw the line? How will you know when you
have gone too far??? I suggest that the criterion be AIR QUALITY. This is
objective and measurable. The San Francisco Bay Area is a nonattainment area, with respect to federal ambient air quality standards. The air cannot be cleaned up without decreasing traffic, and any project that is "growth-
inducing", such as freeway expansion, will only make the situation worse.
Clearly, none of us, including you, I'm sure, want a state that is wall-
to-wall pavement. The only thing we disagree on, is where to draw the line.
May I suggest that we draw the line NOW?? I realize that stopping freeway
expansion is a new concept, but I see no other way to preserve the natural
environment on which all life depends.
I would appreciate a personal reply from you. Can you please respond
within 5 working days?
Michael J. Vandeman, Ph.D.
cc: George Deukmejian
California State Air Resources Board
Bay Area Air Quality Management District