Exide Technologies

Ending the Largest Lead and Arsenic Contamination of Southeast Los Angeles Communities  

SCAQMD hearing on Exide 1

Residents express their outrage during a community meeting hosted by the SCAQMD.

Read our latest fact sheet regarding the community clean up plan by clicking here.


Exide Technologies, a multibillion-dollar battery recycler in Vernon, California, impacted the lives of over 110,000 people in Los Angeles County, particularly in the Southeast Los Angeles region. Exide operated without proper hazardous waste permits, accruing over 80 violations, and violated many environmental laws for over 30 years. State agencies failed to hold Exide accountable and failed to protect communities from lead and arsenic exposure. Lead is a neurotoxin that is potentially potent to children which can cause lasting negative impacts on their development and behavior throughout their lives, while arsenic is a known carcinogen. During its operation, Exide reported emitting 7 million tons of lead into the air and documented a cancer risk of 156 people in a million.  

In March 2015, community organizing efforts led to the permanent shutdown of Exide Technologies. However, the company filed for bankruptcy and the US Department of Justice allowed Exide to abandon the site. While most of the facility has been demolished, the community cleanup of contaminated homes and parkways is far from a comprehensive cleanup. Exide contaminated over 10,000 homes and 6,000 parkways.

Identifying Contamination and Seeking a Comprehensive Cleanup
CBE has been actively engaged on environmental health and justice issues in the affected areas for over two decades. CBE continues to provide leadership academies for local residents, form deep partnerships with SELA community groups and organizations, and effectively advocate for policies that promote a healthy and just environment. While the shutdown of Exide Technologies isa huge victory led by community members, we must continue to work for a comprehensive and effective cleanup of all homes and communities impacted by Exide. CBE continues to advocate for funding of the community cleanup, tenant protections from lead exposure and displacement, and the transformation of state agencies.  

TAKE ACTION NOW: Write a letter to the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and the state of California to push for continued accountability, funding, and urgency behind the cleanup of resident’s homes by filling out the form below. Click here to view the form on action network.

TOMA ACCIÓN AHORA: Utilice el formulario que se encuentra a continuación para escribir una carta al la Agencia de Protección Ambiental de EE. UU. (USEPA) y al estado de California para presionar por una responsabilidad, financiación y urgencia continua detrás de la limpieza de las casas de los residentes. Haga clic aquí para ver la misma forma en Action Network.