Southsiders Linda Marianiello and Miguel Acosta have for about two years been trying to prevent Associated Asphalt and Materials from consolidating operations in Santa Fe under a new permit, citing community health concerns, particularly given the company’s history of possible violations.
The New Mexico Environment Department approved Associated Asphalt’s permit last summer to move its operations from both sides of Highway 599 to just the west side of the roadway.
Marianiello and Acosta, who’s the co-director of local nonprofit Earth Care, are undeterred.
They see the permit as part of a larger issue of low-income and non-white neighborhoods bearing the brunt of industrial pollution.
Represented by attorneys Maslyn Locke and Eric Jantz with the New Mexico Environmental Law Center, they appealed the department’s order in August, and a public hearing on the appeal is set for later this month.
“We demand equity and believe that residents on the Southside deserve the same quality of life as all residents of Santa Fe,” Marianiello, a Tierra Contenta resident, tells SFR. “It’s an environmental justice issue because just imagine if Associated Asphalt had put in an application for a location on Bishop’s Lodge or Canyon Road. I wonder how far that would’ve gotten.”
She and Acosta first joined with other Southside residents at a neighborhood meeting to discuss the permit in February 2020, shortly after the company submitted its application, and are calling themselves the Santa Fe Southside Environmental Justice Coalition….