Beach nourishment to begin at Goleta Beach County Park

Due to recent rainfall and the increased chance of future storms, Santa Barbara County Public Works (Public Works) will begin sediment deposit operations at Goleta Beach. The sediment deposit will start as soon as Friday, March 20, 2020, and will continue as needed until facilities have been cleared. Operations will occur Monday through Friday. Public Works has used upland disposal sites and other County property for debris management. However, inadequate space remains for this effort.

Santa Barbara County Flood Control District (District) Deputy Director Tom Fayram said, "During recent storms, we have seen a substantial amount of material coming through the watersheds impacted by the Thomas Fire. If we don't clear out the rocks and sediment, it leaves the surrounding areas vulnerable to increased runoff during future storms."

The County is making every effort to assure safety and public access to Goleta Beach. Sediment nourishment has occurred at Goleta Beach since 1994 with desilting material from the Goleta Slough and other creeks and basins. Public Works has also conducted environmental monitoring at the beach since 2003. Before beach nourishment operations, the District obtains emergency permits from state and federal agencies. The District collects sediment samples from the debris basins and ocean water samples before and during deposit operations. Weekly reports with information on sediment sampling results are sent to the regulatory agencies. The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department also monitors the ocean water at the deposit sites to ensure they meet water quality standards for recreation. Beach nourishment operations have also protected Goleta Beach Park from further erosion by creating a wide shore near the location of the sediment deposit.

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