Environmentalists Challenge Salton Sea Development Project

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A jet leaves a contrail above the shoreline of ancient Lake Cahuilla... News PhotoAncient,Biggest,Business,California,Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival,Coastline,Colorado,Construction Industry,Desert,Development,Environment,Environmental Issues,Finance,Geographical Locations,Horizontal,Imperial County,Mecca,Nature,New,Outdoors,People,Persian Gulf Countries,Riverside County,Salton City,Salton Sea,Town,USA,Vapor Trail,WildlifePhotographer Collection: Getty Images News 2012 Getty ImagesMECCA, CA - MARCH 21: A jet leaves a contrail above the shoreline of ancient Lake Cahuilla on the southern Santa Rosa Mountains near Travertine Point, in an area where a controversial development would create a new town for nearly 40,000 people on the northwest shore of the biggest lake in California, the Salton Sea, on March 21, 2012 south of Mecca, California. The Center for Biological Diversity and the Sierra Club have filed a lawsuit against Riverside County after the Board of Supervisors approved a record-sized development project for Riverside County, saying that it would increase pollution and threaten wildlife in nearby parks at the Salton Sea and in the largest state park in California, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. Though massive fish die-offs occur annually, drawings in the Travertine Point plans feature peaceful marinas but the lake has been plagued by dropping water levels and increasing salt levels for decades. Scientists say that a catastrophic decline in the fish population is inevitable and a resulting 25 to 50 percent drop in the migratory bird population will destroy a major stopping point in the Pacific bird migration route. The shrinking salt lake is exposing more and more fine dust, posing health problem as blows it across the region. Funding to stop the ecological collapse of the sea is not likely in the near futures with its $9 billion price tag. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)