Proposed LNG Terminal Dead In the Water
Photo by Brett Millar.
On April 12, the Sierra Club mobilized more than 2,000 people (above) in Oxnard, California, north of Los Angeles, to attend a hearing on a liquified natural gas terminal proposed by BHP Billiton, the world's largest mining company, off the Southern California coast. Sierra Club Coastal Programs Director Mark Massara called the turnout "the best-attended environmental hearing in California in the last four decades." Three days later, the Club's Great Coastal Places Campaign turned out another 500 people for a standing-room-only hearing in Santa Barbara. The all-day hearing, covered by the Associated Press, every major California newspaper, Santa Barbara TV news, and NPR radio, ended with a unanimous vote by the California Coastal Commission denying certification for the project. The victory was deemed impossible just months ago in the face of a corporation with extremely deep pockets and strong support in Washington, D.C. and Sacramento. The Sierra Club created a diverse coalition of working families, Latino and labor groups, local Chambers of Commerce, realtors, school groups, and mobilized Club members throughout Southern California to beat back the LNG terminal.
California Assemblyman Pedro Nava and Sierra Club organizer Mark Massara celebrate after the Santa Barbara hearing.
Oxnard Mayor Tom Holden at the Oxnard rally.