Our June meeting included a celebration at Haskell’s Beach of the recently completed removal of two enormous oil piers and caissons in the City of Goleta. The piers, the last remaining shorezone oil production piers in California, were built in the 1920s and remained operational until the 1990s. The Commission embarked on the decommissioning project after Venoco, the operator of the former leases, filed for bankruptcy in 2017. State and local elected officials, agency partners, and the local community joined the Commission at this celebratory event commemorating the removal of these oil piers and a restored coastline, as well as a tangible example of our commitment to a clean energy future.
The staff reports and comment letters from our June meeting are available on the Commission’s website. Below are highlights from our meeting.
The Commission voted to extend PG&E’s lease for five years—through October 2030—for continued use of a water intake structure, breakwaters, cooling water discharge channel, and other structures on state land associated with the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant. The lease authorization stipulates that if any conditions of SB 846 are not met, it would immediately constitute a default of the lease. PG&E would then have 120 days to cure the default by applying for a new or amended lease to use the lease premises consistent with a Decommission and Restoration Plan. The lease authorization also stipulates that the Commission may direct PG&E to provide Commission staff with a written analysis of preventive actions, if any, to remediate any newly identified seismic vulnerabilities of the facilities within the lease premises when PG&E conducts an updated seismic assessment under SB 846.
The Commission adopted a support position on a key offshore wind energy bill, AB 80 (Addis), which would create a west coast offshore wind science entity at the Ocean Protection Council to coordinate and oversee the science and monitoring necessary to inform the environmentally responsible development of offshore wind energy off the coast of California. Two of the bill’s co-sponsor’s, NRDC and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, testified in support of this action.
The Commission authorized a lease to the City of Stockton to construct and use a 60-inch-diameter outfall pipeline, bank protection, and a temporary cofferdam; and to remove an existing apron and use existing bank protection. The lease is necessary to facilitate the City of Stockton’s Regional Wastewater Control Facility Project, which is intended to provide essential infrastructure for wastewater conveyance; reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions; and enhance public health and safety.
Abandoned Vessel Removal
The Commission authorized staff to remove and dispose of three abandoned vessels on state waterways in the Sacramento and San Joaquin counties. The Commission’s action will result in a safer environment for boaters and prevent marine pollution and environmental damage. Abandoned vessels are a significant problem for California and the Delta region. Abandoned vessels are or can become navigation hazards, environmental hazards, and public health and safety hazards.
Future Meetings and Ways to Stay Informed
The Commission’s next meeting is on August 17 and will be a hybrid meeting with a virtual and in-person participation option. You can sign up on our website to receive updates about future Commission meetings. Another great way to stay informed is to follow the State Lands Commission on Twitter. You can also watch a webcast of the meeting on Cal-Span.org.