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Bob Meinetz's picture
Nuclear Power Policy Activist, Independent

I am a passionate advocate for the environment and nuclear energy. With the threat of climate change, I’ve embarked on a mission to help overcome the fears of nuclear energy. I’ve been active in...

  • Member since 2018
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  • Mar 23, 2022

A plan to float wind power turbines in waters off Santa Barbara County has sparked outrage from a Native American tribe and environmentalists.


"LOMPOC, Calif. — Along the wind-blasted shores of the Gaviota Coast, near the rocket gantries of Vandenberg Space Force Base, lazy breakers claw at the base of sandy bluffs and dunes, while farther out to sea, great white sharks cruise beneath churning whitecaps.

It’s a stunning and uniquely Californian vista, a place where pristine headlands overlook the submerged remains of sacred Chumash villages and launchpads fire the nation’s newest and most secret technology into orbit.

But in recent months, this stretch of the Santa Barbara County coastline has become a bitter collision point for several national and global imperatives — the reduction of planet-warming greenhouse gasses, the conservation of natural habitats and the atonement for injustices committed against Indigenous populations.

A plan by private corporations to float up to eight wind power generators less than three miles offshore has run headlong into efforts to designate a vast area of ocean off the Central Coast as a Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary.

The turbine proposal has sparked outrage among conservationists and members of the Northern Chumash Tribe, who say the sanctuary is intended to preserve Chumash tribal history and protect the area’s rich biodiversity. Building a network of floating turbines that are tethered to the seafloor and connected to one another and the mainland with electric cables is an affront to preservation, they say."


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