Gaviota Coast Conservancy is dedicated to protecting the rural character and environmental integrity of the Gaviota Coast for present and future generations


Gaviota: The End of Southern California


The Gaviota Coast, located in southern Santa Barbara County, includes the coastal watersheds between Coal Oil Point in Goleta, to Point Arguello on Vandenberg Air Force Base, and the remainder of Vandenberg's coast to Point Sal. The portion down-coast of Point Conception constitutes about 15% of Southern California's coast, yet contains approximately 50% of its remaining rural coastline.

The integrity of the Gaviota Coast is threatened by urbanization, rural McMansions and industrial development. Currently, ranches on the eastern Gaviota Coast are proposing residential developments with massive homes adjacent to sensitive habitat, sacred sites and on top of well-used coastal access trails. The County is proposing to build Costco-sized buildings on top of a landfill they operate in a small coastal canyon (Tajiguas), substantially increasing truck traffic through the Gaviota Coast. Four offshore platforms are linked to two oil processing plants by an array of oil and gas pipelines, one of which caused the devastating Refugio Oil Spill on May 19, 2015; Thanks in part to the shutdown of corroded oil pipelines, Venoco has declared bankruptcy and has returned all of its leases to the State. Platform Holly will be decommissioned and removed in coming years, and its Ellwood onshore processing facility (located in the City of Goleta) will be removed and cleaned up. 

To meet these challenges and preserve our coastal heritage, the Gaviota Coast Conservancy is dedicated to long-term strategies to permanently protect the Gaviota Coast.  Sign in and subscribe to notifications to hear about upcoming hearings, events, and opportunities. Contribute what you can to help us protect the Gaviota Coast, and thank you!

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    Gaviota Coast Conservancy Membership

    Your tax-deductible donation (or monthly recurring donation of $4 or more) enrolls you for one year as a Gaviota Coast Conservancy Member, with special status and opportunities, including:

    • invites to exclusive Gaviota hikes and adventures
    • advocacy updates
    • our biannual Coastlines newsletter
    • members-only event invites
    • and especially a stronger Gaviota Coast Conservancy to better protect our beautiful and unique coastline
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  • Donate

    Annual Membership

    Annually recurring $50 membership, for ease; with exclusive invitations, hikes, events, and news

    Donate
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    Take Action

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    Join Gaviota Coast Conservancy

    and help us continue to preserve our beautiful coastline and watersheds

    Sign in on the sidebar with email, Facebook or Twitter or Join our list to receive our emails. We send emails about once a month and ONLY share the list with Naples Coalition, an allied organization that focuses specifically on the Naples region of the Gaviota Coast. We send our biannual newsletter Coastlines in the Spring and Fall.

    Volunteer to build community support around the issues affecting the Gaviota Coast. Or call Janet Koed, (805) 683-6631.

    Donate to Gaviota Coast Conservancy. We are a volunteer organization that relies upon public support to continue our work. We cannot defend our coastal heritage without broad based community involvement. Please be generous, and thanks.

    Become a Member of Gaviota Coast Conservancy! For $50 your one-year membership includes exclusive members-only events and opportunities like hikes, adventures and parties, and advocacy updates, as well as our biannual newsletter, Coastlines

    Visit the Gaviota Coast! Be docents (to find out how, ask Janet). Use the access that we're fighting to maintain!

    Take pictures of your visits, and share them with us here.

    Help us document your Gaviota usage by filling out this quick online survey. To let us know which specific areas you visit, please click here. For more dedicated users, please fill out, sign, and mail us this print survey (please mail to: Gaviota Survey, PO Box 92233, Santa Barbara, California 93190)

    Attend Events by checking the Gaviota Coast Conservancy Event Calendar for dates and details of upcoming activities.

    Thank you for all you do!

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  • Upcoming events

    Sunday, September 23, 2018 at 01:30 PM · 17 rsvps

    Naples Hike on the Gaviota Coast

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    Join us to hike, explore and learn about the Gaviota Coast, a unique biodiversity hotspot. Due to the sensitive areas visited, we limit the number of hikers, so please rsvp. Wear sensible shoes and bring water, sunscreen and a hat. Terrain is relatively easy. Meet at the Winchester 76 gas station and market.

    Join the list for future hikes

    Donate to support our mission to protect this spectacular and rare California coastline

    Tuesday, October 16, 2018 at 06:00 PM
    The Sandbox in Santa Barbara, CA

    Volunteer Monarch Monitoring

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    Come Learn about The Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count on the Gaviota Coast

    Join us at The Sandbox with Charis van der Heide, biologist at Rincon Consultants in Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara County volunteer coordinator for the Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count, who will share a 25-minute presentation on the annual monarch butterfly migration and the Count, sponsored by Xerces Society and the Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count.

    Every November and January, volunteers throughout California mobilize to count monarchs at overwintering sites and the efforts are organized by local coordinators: Jessica Griffiths, senior biologist at Althouse and Meade in Paso Robles for SLO County and Charis van der Heide in Santa Barbara County.

    There are at least a dozen monarch butterfly overwintering sites on the Gaviota Coast, and possibly others that have yet to be found. We hope to recruit volunteers to help count populations and possibly locate new monarch treasures of the Gaviota Coast. Volunteers may even discover new overwintering sites. Volunteers will receive instruction, training and invitation to join the Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count on the Gaviota Coast.

    More information about the Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count: http://www.westernmonarchcount.org/

    More information about the Xerces Society: https://xerces.org/

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  • Latest from the blog

    Hollister Intervention Approved for Gaviota Coastal Trail Alliance

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    Judge Issues Ruling Granting Gaviota Coastal Trail Alliance Intervention in Hollister Ranch Public Access Settlement

    Today's LA Times: Hollister Ranch Intervention Granted 

    Hearing on Fairness of Settlement Agreement Postponed until November 19, 2018 at 1:30 PM

    SANTA BARBARA, CA – The Honorable Judge Colleen Sterne issued a ruling allowing community groups to intervene in the Hollister Ranch access case. (The SB Independent has the background story). The ruling states that “the court would benefit from having the participation of the GCTA in presenting views on fairness that are not now being presented by the State Defendants or by plaintiffs.” (Ruling, Pappas v. California Coastal Conservancy, Santa Barbara County Superior Court #1417388 for hearing on Monday August 27, 2018, page 8 of 9).

    “The Court recognizes the importance of public access to the State’s lands by Hollister Ranch, and the role that community organizations have in advocating for these rights” explained Marc Chytilo, one of GCTA’s attorneys. “The public has a right to enjoy the wet sand beaches at Hollister Ranch as much as anyone else. These are rights that were reserved at statehood in 1848. Hollister residents and their chosen guests have enjoyed near-exclusive access to state tidelands and marine resources for nearly 40 years, but the public has an equal right to enjoy these state lands. The California Constitution guarantees public access to Hollister Ranch.”

    The Court will finalize its ruling on GCTA’s intervention on Monday August 27 at 9:30 at a hearing in Judge Sterne’s courtroom in the Santa Barbara County Superior Court. In the tentative ruling, the Judge identified a number of issues she wants the parties to provide argument on, and postponed the “Fairness Hearing” until November 19, 2018, at 1:30. Previously, that hearing was set for September 10.

    Underlying the intervention is a proposed Settlement Agreement between the Hollister Ranch Owners Association, a class including all 578 owners of lands at Hollister Ranch, the California Coastal Commission and the State Coastal Conservancy. Under that proposed Settlement Agreement, the State would waive its rights under certain easements and/or licenses that exist from an Offer to Dedicate accessways from a 1982 Coastal permit issued to the YMCA of Los Angeles.

    The proposed Settlement Agreement was approved by the State defendants privately in closed session, and when the terms were announced, an immediate public outcry arose. Nearly 2000 public comments have been submitted to the Coastal Commission objecting to the proposed settlement, but the only way to stop the Settlement is by intervening in the
    litigation.

    The Alliance heeds the words of the Coastal Commission’s former Executive Director, Peter Douglas. “The coast is never saved. The coast is always being saved.”

    Members of the public that support this effort are encouraged to visit the Gaviota Coast Conservancy website and make a contribution to achieve public access to Hollister Ranch.

    Donate to the Gaviota Coastal Trail Alliance

    For more info, please contact Marc Chytilo, Law Office of Marc Chytilo, 805-682-0585, Attorney to the Gaviota Coastal Trail Alliance

    Gaviota Coastal Trail Alliance

    Gaviota Coast Conservancy • Santa Barbara County Trails Council •
    COASTWALK / California Coastal Trail Association • California Coastal Protection

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