The Shrinking Salton Sea Endangers Region’s Health

West Shores High School principal Richard Pimentel slips on a cowboy hat before stepping outside. It is a nod to fashion as a response to the region’s harsh desert sun. The school sits about halfway up the western side of California’s Salton Sea. Modern buildings, concrete patios and walkways and an artificial turf sports field stand in stark contrast to the desert community that surrounds the campus. Tumbleweed and sand are common fixtures of the town’s yards. “We are about 30 miles from anywhere,” Pimentel said.