Humboldt Says No to Offshore Oil

April, 2018


Platform Holly, an offshore oil platform near Santa Barbara, California.

Platform Holly, an offshore oil platform near Santa Barbara, California. Photo: U.S. Department of Energy, Wikimedia CC.

In February, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved an anti-offshore oil resolution, which was submitted to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in response to the Trump Administration’s call for the largest offshore oil expansion in modern history.

The County’s anti-offshore oil resolution is precedent-setting. For the first time, Humboldt County has taken an official stand against offshore oil and gas drilling and exploration, joining nearly all other coastal California counties, the Cities of Arcata and Eureka, and more than 20 other coastal communities.

County Supervisor Mike Wilson, who sponsored the resolution, said at the hearing that it’s not just about taking a stand against the federal offshore oil proposal. “We’re currently doing our local coastal planning process, and this stance will inform that process. This is a message to our planning department, as we move forward, and the community of where the Board of Supervisors stands on this and it should be reflected in our land use policies,” Wilson said.

These land use policies include the County’s 1985 Local Coastal Plan for the Humboldt Bay Area, which is finally being updated with grant funding from the Ocean Protection Council and the California Coastal Commission. Currently, the County has over 1,000 acres designated to support offshore oil development, including onshore processing and derrick construction.

Although some of these areas were recently approved for other uses on a temporary basis, the anti-offshore oil resolution sets the stage for environmentally-protective economic development on derelict industrial properties around Humboldt Bay.

Stay tuned for opportunities for public input on this important process that will guide future development and environmental protection! For more information, visit the County’s Humboldt Bay Area Local Coastal Plan Update webpage at



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