Play

Our Coast at Risk

California's 1,100 miles of coastline are revered around the world, bringing more than a million visitors per year to the Golden State's shores to marvel at our surf, wonder at our wildlife and revel in our iconic sunsets. That our coastline remains accessible to all is thanks to over 40 years of Coastal Act enforcement. Whether or not California's coast remains public and protected rests in the hands of 12 people: California's Coastal Commissioners

Unfortunately, as evaluated by the ActCoastal accountability project, a majority of our current commissioners are too often failing to serve the public, rebuffing staff recommendations in favor of special interests. We must stand together to insist adherence to the Coastal Act. It's time to #SaveOurCoast. 

Join Surfrider Today!

Help #SaveOurCoast by:

1. Demanding strong leadership! 

Require that in the hiring process, Commissioners acknowledge that the overarching goal and purpose of a new Coastal Commission Executive Director (ED) is to make sure Commission staff continues their excellent track record of fairly and objectively applying the Coastal Act to the various issues and matters that come before the Commission.

Answer these survey questions, emphasizing the need for the new ED to maintain an independent staff and an inspirational, high-functioning atmosphere. This survey will inform both the Commission's final ED position announcement and the interview questions that the staff and consultant will prepare for interviewing candidates.

Submit a letter to Coastal Commission staff regarding the Draft Coastal Commission Executive Director position statement to Deputy Chief Susan Hansch and Human Resources Chief Melanie Wong.

2. Follow and use #SaveOurCoast on Instagram and Twitter to draw attention to our efforts and broaden the reach of our collective voices.

3. Work with Surfrider staff to keep updated on California Coastal Commission meetings and agendas, then attend and participate!

4. Sign up for updates through ActCoastal, the Coastal Commission accountability site.

Campaign Updates

Stay up-to-date on what's going on with our coast

ActCoastal is a campaign to help protect California’s coast by bringing transparency and accountability to the actions of the California Coastal Commission. The ActCoastal coalition alerts readers to hot issues coming before the Commission and provides tips on actions that coastal defenders can take to ensure that the Commissioners – and those who appoint them – are accountable to the public and upholding the Coastal Act.

Never be in the dark on what's happening with our coast – get updates from ActCoastal today

The Coastal Act: The law protecting your rights and our coastline

The California Coastal Commission was established by voter initiative in 1972 (Proposition 20) and later made permanent by the California State Legislature through adoption of the California Coastal Act of 1976. The Coastal Act protects public access and recreation, ensures "lower cost" visitor accommodations, prioritizes habitat protection and covers a broad range of other land and water uses in the Coastal Zone.

Development activities, which are broadly defined by the Coastal Act to include (among others) construction of buildings and other activities that intensify land use or impact public access to the coast, generally require a coastal permit from either the Coastal Commission or the local government.

It is in the application for these permits that the inherent conflicts between private development and public use arise, and the Coastal Act is supposed to serve as the guiding document to resolve those conflicts. Coastal Commission staff makes recommendations based on it and Coastal Commissioners are obligated to uphold it. We, the public, must insist that they do. 

Learn more about the California Coastal Commission
Protecting our coasts

Easy ways to get involved

  • Track Commissioners' votes through ActCoastal.org.
  • Get to know the issues and speak up through letters or public comment at the Commission's monthly hearings. 
  • Share Surfrider and ActCoastal #SaveOurCoast posts on social media to help alert others to threats.
  • Tell your local state electeds to insist on support for California's Coastal Act.

Find Your Local Chapter

Upcoming Events

Oct 5-Oct 7: Coastal Commission Meeting
Ukiah Valley Conference Center 200 South School Street Ukiah, CA 95482
Nov 2-Nov 4: Coastal Commission Meeting
Oceano Resort Hotel 280 Capistrano Drive Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
Dec 7-Dec 9: Coastal Commission Meeting
Ventura City Council Chambers 601 Poli Street Ventura, CA 93002

Looking for more information?

Resources Contact More Info

Learn more about the California Coastal Commission http://www.coastal.ca.gov/

info@surfrider.org

Thanks for your support!