Santa Barbara County Supervisors have given preliminary approval for use of a new oil pipeline in the Gaviota area which will end the need for the use of barges to move oil from the region.
Currently, oil from offshore Platform Holly is shipped to Venoco’s Ellwood Marine Terminal, where it’s then loaded onto barges at Coal Oil Point for shipment to the Los Angeles area, or the Bay Area. This new eight mile pipeline will allow the shipment of oil directly to a regional pipeline. The pipeline will end the need for the use of the last barges in the Santa Barbara Channel to actually ship oil, and reduce the risk of accidents.
A coalition of environmental groups in the county supported the plan, and the State Coastal Commission, and the City of Goleta have already signed off on the effort.
If County Supervisors give final approval to the project later this month, it could be in operation in the next few weeks.