A company named Real Estate Recovery Capital has purchased the controversial Petrochem property north of Ventura from its longtime owner. But the broad coalition of 13 organizations led by CFROG will keep right on vehemently insisting that this site in the gateway to the beautiful Ojai Valley be put to a use befitting its sensitive river habitat.

From its inception in the 1950s as a fertilizer manufacturer, to a later use as a refinery for crude oil which processed 20,000 barrels a day and stored hundreds of thousands more in tanks, the property has been controversial and harmful to nearby Ventura Avenue residents and the Ojai Valley airshed.

Activists, including CFROG and other community groups, packed a small conference room on Oct. 14 to protest the last owner's proposal for the site, an auto and contractor storage yard. Our group, the Petrochem Appeal Alliance (PAA), believes it is time for this ecologically sensitive area to move from polluting uses of the land to those which contribute to sustainable practices and preservation of this valuable natural area.

We are glad to see it change hands away from the original owner who allowed a highly polluting operation along the Ventura River.

The following organizations filed a joint appeal of the decision by the Ventura County Planning Director to approve a transportation and contractor services storage yard for the site:

Climate First: Replacing Oil and Gas
Environmental Coalition of Ventura County
Food and Water Action
Ventura Citizens for Hillside Preservation
Friends of the Ventura River
Ventura Land Trust
Wishtoyo Chumash Foundation
California Trout, Inc.
Sierra Club Los Padres Chapter
Westside Community Council
Showing Up for Racial Justice
Unitarian Universalist Church of Ventura
Central Coast Alliance for a Sustainable Economy (CAUSE)

CFROG will monitor proposals for this site and advocate for our residents.