Public meetings are planned this week to consider the environmental impacts of a proposed 124-mile oil pipeline across the Central Coast — and protesters promise to be there.
Santa Barbara County is hosting scoping meetings in Santa Barbara and Arroyo Grande for the Plains All-American Pipeline’s proposal to rebuild a pipeline that corroded, leading to an oil spill on Refugio State Beach in May 2015.
The meetings are in preparation of an environmental impact report required under the California Environmental Quality Act.
The first meeting is 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors Hearing Room, Fourth Floor of the Administration Building at 105 E. Anapamu Street in Santa Barbara. The other is 6 p.m. Thursday at the South County Regional Center, 800 West Branch Street in Arroyo Grande.
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The Center for Biological Diversity said rallies will be held before both meetings.
“Plains Pipeline doesn’t deserve a second chance to spill oil along California’s coast. Californians want to end offshore drilling, not extend it with a new coastal oil pipeline,” said Miyoko Sakashita, oceans program director with the Center for Biological Diversity.
The pipeline replacement project would allow ExxonMobil to reopen offshore platforms off the Santa Barbara coast. The pipeline would cross several areas of endangered species habitat in the Carrizo Plain and Los Padres National Forest.