Because of the work of the Environmental Defense Center the Santa Barbara County Planning Commission went against staffs recommendation and denied Pacific Coast Energy Co’s (PCEC) proposal to drill 96 new oil and gas wells using cyclic steam injection near Orcutt. PCEC’s proposal would have doubled existing operations in a biologically rich area that contains endangered plants and animals and is prone to harmful oil seeps. The EIR concluded this project would have significant impacts to wildlife, air and water quality and climate change. PCEC filed an appeal which will be heard by the Board of Supervisors in early October. Stay tuned for the hearing date and ways you can help EDC ensure this project is officially denied.
We have yet to see the Ventura County Planning Commission or our Board of Supervisors make a decision that varies from staff recommendations on an oil and gas project, and now in Santa Barbara County for this project it is the burden of the applicant (oil company) to make the case for the project. CFROG feels that is the way it should be - not the public's burden when a project is not a good idea for the public or environment.