Washington, DC - Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, issued the following statement today regarding her request that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) take immediate action to address the overwhelming odors that have presented a public health risk to children and families in Mecca, California:

Senator Boxer said: "I am continuing to focus on the unacceptable conditions that Mecca has been experiencing, including the impact on area schools and children. Today, EPA regional officials indicated to me that they are treating the situation as a priority. I am continuing to monitor the problem and I am hopeful that progress can be made as early as next week."

Attached is a map supplied by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) that shows the schools and nearby facilities in the Mecca area. Also attached is information that SCAQMD distributed at a town hall meeting on April 28 in Mecca.