Aera Energy withdraws app for hundreds of new oil wells in Santa Maria area

Aera Energy withdrew its application to drill hundreds of new cyclic-steaming oil wells in East Cat Canyon yesterday (May 27)!

SBCAN has been working for more than eight years to defeat onshore oil development proposals in the greater Santa Maria area. First, we worked to secure strict mitigations from the County of Santa Barbara for Santa Maria Energy’s expansion in Orcutt, then we helped ensure that Pacific Coast Energy's Orcutt Hill expansion was denied by the County.

Next PetroRock and now Aera Energy (owned by Exxon/Mobil and Shell) have withdrawn from the fight sensing the formidable community opposition and the futility of trying to make a profit drilling for some of the thickest and most carbon intensive oil in the world.

We thank all of our volunteers who have written letters and testified before the County Planning Commission against this project, as well as all our partners including Sierra Club, Center for Biological Diversity, Los Padres Forest Watch, Safe Energy Now North County, Food and Water Watch, 350 Santa Barbara, Sunrise Coalition, World Business Academy, Standing Rock Coalition, and others who have joined the fight with intelligence and vigor.

SBCAN and Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club have retained the Environmental Defense Center on this effort.  EDC has represented us—and all the residents of the county—exceedingly well in analyzing and articulating the devastating impacts of Aera’s proposal.

Our water resources, flora and fauna, air quality, and the earth’s climate are safer with this proposal withdrawn.