Protecting Gray Whale Birthing Lagoons in Baja


Earth Island Institute Campaign Opposing a Massive Industrial Salt Plant in San Ignacio Lagoon.

Once hunted to near extinction, the California gray whale is now threatened by a proposed salt factory. Mitsubishi International Corporation and the Mexican-government-owned salt company, ESSA, plan a massive industrial development at the gray whale's last pristine winter nursery, San Ignacio Lagoon on Mexico's Baja Peninsula.
spyhopping whale

San Ignacio Lagoon is the last unspoiled place where gray whale mothers spend the winter months raising newborn calves. This fragile environment for gray whales is also part of the larger Vizcaino Nature Reserve and is a U.N World Heritage Site.

If built, the Mitsubishi/ESSA megaproject at San Ignacio will destroy 21,000 acres of habitat to create a network of roads for earth movers, salt evaporation flats, pumping stations, holding pools for toxic brine, and a ship loading facility for salt "supertankers". Ship traffic and the continuous operation of industrial machinery would end the tranquillity of this place forever. Pollution and ship traffic from a similar ESSA salt works in the neighboring Guerrero Negro has, over 40 years, destroyed the ecological balance of a place once as pristine as San Ignacio. In late 1997, a toxic brine spill at this Guerrero Negro facility resulted in the deaths of at least 94 endangered sea turtles. The Mitsubishi/ESSA project at San Ignacio Lagoon will be as large as the one at Guerrero Negro.

Only opposition from the international community can defeat this project. We must take action to save the gray whales and San Ignacio!

International Marine Mammal Project
300 Broadway, suite 28    San Francisco, CA  94133
or fax 415/788-7324

breeching whale

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