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CEMEX Statement on Inaccurate Information about the Soledad Canyon Project

Houston - August 18, 2006

CEMEX, Inc. made the following statement about the misinformation the city of Santa Clarita has provided residents and reporters about the Soledad Canyon Project.

"Yet again the city is spending taxpayer dollars on a campaign of myths and nonfactual information," said Susana Duarte, Vice President of Communications and Community Relations for CEMEX.

"CEMEX will provide straight talk, not misinformation about the project. We are mailing information to residents and creating a special mini-Web site to provide facts about the project. Our goal is to make sure residents can make informed and educated decisions regarding this project that are based on facts that have been verified by numerous studies, officials and authorities."

The Facts on the Soledad Canyon Project:

Size & Scope of the Project
  • The Soledad Canyon Project is NOT the largest Bureau of Land Management mine.
  • The project is NOT the largest sand and gravel mine in the LA County area, let alone the whole country.
  • There are five other mines in the San Gabriel Valley that are similar in size or larger than the project.
  • The Soledad Canyon Project is legally bound by the Consent Decree to mine not more than 69.2 million tons of sand and gravel in order to produce a total of 56.1 million tons of product. The project is permitted to produce between 1.4 million and 5 million tons each year.
  • The project is on the back side of the mountain. Only 177 acres or less will be disturbed over the life of the project. CEMEX will conduct a full-scale reclamation process, replanting native plants and taking other steps to return the land to a natural setting.
  • Los Angeles County uses 34 million tons per year of sand and gravel for construction projects including roads, schools, and other public buildings. This is more than half of what the Soledad Canyon Project is allowed to produce over the full life of the project.
  • If all mining projects were limited to 300,000 tons per year, LA County would need over 100 mines to meet its needs for 1 year.
Location of the Project Site
  • The property has been zoned for sand and gravel mining by Los Angeles County for more than 30 years and has been classified by the State of California as a "Regionally Significant Construction Aggregate Resource Area." This designation in 1987 was part of a state-wide effort to protect local reserves of sand and gravel important to the economic well-being of various regions of California.
  • Soledad Canyon has been mined since the 1960s.
  • Currently, other existing sand and gravel mining operations are located in this area as well.
Traffic
  • The Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) Record of Decision reports that the estimated number of truck trips for the project will increase traffic on Antelope Valley Freeway by less than 1.5%.
  • The BLM found that the volume of trucks making round trips to and from the site are well below the 150 peak hour trip criteria of the LA County guidelines from the 1997 Los Angeles County Traffic Impact Analysis Guidelines and the LA Congestion Management Program.
  • The Environmental Impact Report and the Environmental Impact Statement both concluded that there would not be a significant impact on traffic.
  • Without this mine, there would be the same number of trucks on the freeway, but they would be traveling longer distances from places like Palmdale, bringing sand and gravel to the LA area instead of bringing the product from Soledad Canyon. Many of these trucks would be driving right past the city of Santa Clarita.
  • CEMEX has agreed to limit the number of trucks entering and leaving the site to 8 trucks during the morning peak period and 20 trucks in the evening peak traffic period.
  • CEMEX has also committed to fund the construction of a paved left-turn and shared through/right-turn lane on both the east and west approaches of Soledad Canyon Road at the project entrance along with additional funding for other traffic improvements.
  • We have also committed to donate nearly $2 million to create an Open Space/Visual, Air Quality, and Traffic Fund. This fund will be dedicated to improve, enhance and replenish open space, parks, trails, and traffic improvements in the area communities, as well as to assist in the enhancement of air quality.
  • CEMEX has committed to provide $275,000 for a Clean School Bus Program. The funds will help purchase alternative fuel buses, lower-emitting diesel buses, or technology to decrease particulate emissions on existing buses for the use of the William S. Hart Union High School District, Acton-Agua Dulce Unified School District, Saugus Union School District, and Sulphur Springs Union School District.

Contact Information:

Media Contact
Susana A. Duarte
713-650-6200