Saturday, June 6, 2020     Volume: 21, Issue: 14

Santa Maria Sun / Canary

The following article was posted on May 8th, 2019, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 20, Issue 10 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 20, Issue 10

The issues remain the same


Who’s ready for some Ocean Dunes State Vehicular Recreational Area dust talk?

Oh come on, it’s thrilling.

All this talk about micro-particulate matter, cancer, and dust mitigation is making me feel like I want to talk about the Oso Flaco Lake controversy again.

On one side, we’ve got the Central Valley revved up and rearing to jump the top of a big ‘ol dune. On the other, we’ve got Trilogy ready to tell everyone to get out of their air! Jim Suty and the Friends of the Oceano Dunes are spouting the same talking points they’ve been yammering about for years.

“Fake science! Fake facts!” they scream, which makes them sound like a bunch of climate change deniers.

Ian Walker, a scientist who studies coastal dunes, is what I like to call an “expert,” guys!

“We don’t see the types of dust emissions that we see here in Oceano in most coastal dunes systems,” he said. “There are other land use activities behind this.”
And he’s calling for a foredune. A wall of sand that will block sand from blowing past it and block more of the recreation area from riders. How do you think that will go over?

It’s not. This saga will never end. Just like the Camp 4 saga, which has been placed into trust with the federal government on behalf of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians so many times that my head is struggling to keep up.

The Department of the Interior approved it. Then it was appealed. Then U.S. District Court Judge Stephen Wilson sent it back to the department. Then Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Tara Sweeney said “Yes way!” And then, she said, “Oops, there are endangered bird species there.” Not approved.

Now, the House of Representatives passed a resolution to place it into trust, which needs to be approved by the Senate and signed by the president. Do you see that happening? The ever positive Tribal Chairman Kenneth Kahn said “We are pleased.” Meanwhile, if I was him, I’d be saying “WT actual F, people?”

And that’s what I would also say to the city of Lompoc if I was a firefighter working, sleeping, and eating in a seismically unsafe fire station that the city’s known about for at least five years. WT actual F, Lompoc? Get your budget together! Get your priorities figured out.

The Canary knows that nothing ever changes. Send comments to 

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