Community Partners Help Keep Santa Barbara Santa Barbara ™ Partners

Black Tide

We don’t believe that the project will decrease greenhouse gas emissions from the seeps because we don’t believe that the project will decrease the seeps. That is an issue we would like to see analyzed in the Environmental Impact Report.” -Linda Krop

“Black Tide” is a short film featuring the Environmental Defense Center’s Linda Krop, as the producers from UCSB’s Blue Horizon class explore oil production off our precious coastline, natural seepage, and Venoco’s current proposal to expand drilling offshore Ellwood in Goleta.


Art Critics: 2015 Avocado Festival Poster

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Earth Day, Fiesta and Summer Solstice posters get a lot of attention around town, so here’s the 2015 Avocado Festival poster for the many art critics. It was designed by artist Kim Fults.

City’s Crackdown on Gas Powered Leaf Blowers Continues

This City of Santa Barbara has released another notice and video regarding gas-powered leaf blowers… “Did you know there is a City ordinance banning the use of gas powered leaf blowers? These devices are restricted within City limits because they generate excessive noise and air pollution. Electric leaf blowers, which are much quieter and environmentally friendly, are permitted Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.”

Must Have Memberships: Santa Barbara Maritime Museum

A Facebook Friend noted that there are a lot of great photos and more information about the Disaster at Honda Point on the walls of the Jalama Beach store/seating area… “remember if you go out ask for a BURGER PASS at the kiosk, you can eat and check it out with 45 free minutes or pay the $10 day use fee.”

Another great resource for nautical history in Santa Barbara is the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum. The photo below is part of permanent exhibit about Honda Point, the nine vessels and the 23 lives that were lost. So the next time you are down at the Waterfront, stop in and pick up this must-have Santa Barbara membership, details below.

photo 4
sbmaritimeYou’re invited to “Navigate Your Voyage of Discovery” at one of the most intriguing places at the Harbor. A membership at the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum celebrates the ocean—and all activities related to it—in its collection of interactive exhibits and other benefits. From the Chumash culture to modern diving technology—and an upcoming exhibit about Oil in the Channel, it’s a lively exploration of the gifts from the sea.

Memberships begin at $25 for students and seniors, $40 for individuals, and up. Benefits include: free admission for a year, 10% discount on purchases at the gift store, 2 free guest passes, a subscription to the monthly newsletter and an array of discounts and freebies in the harbor’s business and dining district. A membership is also reciprocal with the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation.

Wreck at Hondo Point: Part II

On the night of 8 September, the ships of Destroyer Squadron (DesRon) 11 were on a 24 hour run from San Francisco to San Diego, cruising at 20 knots. The flagship, USS Delphy (DO 261) was in the lead, followed by Destroyer Divisions 33, 31 and 32.

A navigational error and unusual currents caused by the Tokyo earthquake of the previous week along with a decision to maintain a speed of 20 knots and not stop and take soundings, caused the lead destroyer to change heading after believing that they were south of Pt. Conception The ships turned east, supposedly into the Santa Barbara Channel, at 2100 hours. In reality the ships were headed for the rocky shore.

The ships soon entered a thick fog bank, each vessel following the wake of the ship ahead. 5 minutes after the turn, Delphy ran ashore, quickly followed by other members of the squadron. S. P. Lee went ashore broadside to the shoreline cliffs to the north of Delphy. Nicholas stuck on a reef to seaward of S. P. Lee. Young came ashore aft of Delphy, and was quickly rolled onto her side by the flagship’s propeller wash. Woodbury wrecked on a group of rocks offshore, and Fuller was wrecked on the rocks just beyond Woodbury. Lastly, Chauncey grounded inshore of the capsized Young. Somers and Farragut were warned by Delphy’s siren and they slowed considerably before coming ashore; both were able to back off without major damage.

hondoThe other ships of the squadron avoided grounding completely. The ships came to rest in two groups: a main group with Fuller, Woodbury, Young, Chauncey and Delphy roughly in a line, and S. P. Lee & Nicholas together to the north of the other ships. In the aftermath of the grounding the Delphy capsized and Nicholas’ bow broke off.The destroyers that went aground were known as Greyhounds for their speed and were 314 feet long and 32 feet wide.

Rescue efforts began immediately. The survivors from Young escaped to Chauncey via a lifeline. Fishing boats summoned by the surviving ships worked among the rocks, plucking the crews off Fuller and Woodbury. Local ranchers, awakened by Delphy’s siren, hastened to set up breeches buoys from the top of the cliffs down to the wrecked ships. Other survivors waded ashore through the rocks. 23 men were lost, mostly from the capsized Young. The survivors were taken to San Diego by special train shortly after being rescued.

The ships were total losses. They were stricken from the Register, stripped of usable equipment and sold to a scrapper for $1,035. No salvage work was done, and the ships remain where they were wrecked. Chauncey’s remains are still visible. The area is now of Vandenberg AFB. (photos and story courtesy of Channel Island Dive Adventures)


This Date in Local History: Honda Point Disaster

On September 8, 1923 the United States Navy lost seven ships in a mass grounding that lasted less then 5 minutes at Honda Point, California. Honda Point is a treacherous area off of Vandenberg Air Force base, also known as the “Graveyard of the Pacific.” This peacetime disaster had few equals at the time, and still remains one of the worst such disasters in US Navy history.

Happy Labor Day Santa Barbara!

Local views of Santa Barbara by Dan Seibert.

I just want to wish everyone a happy Labor Day, and hopefully most everyone takes the day off. I looked for an appropriate photo, along the lines of a bbq.

But I saw this from January, 2010 taken right after a cold storm. I can’t wait to see this again. Rain on the ground, snow on the mountains, people wearing winter coats.

Harbor View Sunset

Santa Barbara photo of the week by Bill Heller, click to enlarge.
Harbor View Sunset
The Santa Barbara Harbor about a half hour after a beautiful summer sunset. This year has been one of the driest on record, but several Pacific hurricanes have supplied us with enough of these beautiful wispy evening clouds to put on quite an unseasonable show. This particular day had a wonderful parade of high clouds all day giving me a good hint that the evening would be beautiful. And I couldn’t think of a better place to spend the warm evening than walking on the breakwater at the Harbor with my best friend.

-Bill Heller

EcoFacts: Forests for the Trees

Weekly column by Barbara Hirsch

All land species require them in some way or other, and millions of plants and animals are going extinct as we clear away their homes.  A world without trees would not be a human friendly place.  An extensive report befitting the scope of the subject was just published in Nature, giving the best findings yet on the global tree population, calculated by a combination of satellite and ground based field work.
treeThe current count of trees is over 3 trillion, far more than previous estimates. However, the planet has lost close to half the number of trees that existed before deforestation began in relatively recent history.
Less than half of forests are tropical and subtropical. But more than half of the loss has been among them.
How many trees per person? Russia and Canada’s boreal forests contain several thousand trees per person in their countries; Brazil has 1494; U.S. has 716;  China has 102;  India, a mere 28!! 
Around 15 billion trees are lost annually, more than two trees for every person on the planet. In acres, the number is 45 million, an area twice the size of Portugal was lost last year.
The countries with the fastest acceleration of tree loss are in the southern hemisphere. Besides timber, the global demand for beef, soy, rubber and palm oil are driving forces.
On a more local note, at least 12.5 million trees have been killed by the drought in California’s National forests alone. The drought a few years ago in Texas killed 300 million.
In 2006 UNEP – the U.N. Environment Programme – launched a massive tree planting program, the Billion Tree Campaign, that has since resulted in over 12.5 billion trees being planted.


Naples: A Tale of Two Cities

Naples?! First off, it ain’t in Italy, secondly and thirdly it’s not in Florida nor is it outside of Long Beach. It’s right here, a few miles west of Goleta. Over the past decades it’s been a hot potato bouncing from County Planning to the Board of Supervisors to the State Supreme Court and back again. ~ Neal Graffy

On topic this week, here is a special event to highlight: Historian Neal Graffy will host a lecture on Saturday, September 13, about what was happening back in 1887 when John and Alice Williams founded the town of Naples, an 872-acre “Exquisite Summer and Winter Resort.”

Come enjoy stories of the beautiful Gaviota Coast town along with rarely-seen maps and historic photos. The event takes place Sunday, September 13, 2015 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM at the Goleta Valley Historical Society. Click here for information and registration.