Locals March Against Keystone Pipeline Proposal

Hundreds Gather to Voice their Concerns

Jim Murray, KEYT - KCOY - KKFX Reporter, jim.murray@keyt.com
POSTED: 05:06 AM PST Dec 24, 2013    UPDATED: 07:59 PM PDT Sep 22, 2013 
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Environmentalists and supporters of oil and gas production are battling over the Keystone Pipeline Proposal. On Saturday, residents and local lawmakers hit the streets to voice their concerns over what the pipeline would do to the local environment.

The march started at Alameda Park.

Hanna Beth Jackson: "We need to preserve our planet for ourselves and for our generations to come."

And moved to the Sunken Garden at the Court House.

Helene Schneider: "This is not a Midwest issue, it's an American issue."

And by the time the march ended by Stearns Wharf, it was clear that once again Santa Barbara residents want their voices to be heard when it comes to the environment.

Helene Schneider: "Santa Barbara has always been at the forefront of the environmental issues, and that is clear today."

Today's march was part of a bigger national movement, but locally there is the feel that if the Pipeline proposal is passed, California has more to lose than most states.

Hannah-Beth Jackson: "California depends on it's natural resources, so it's important that we protect the environment."

Jim Murray: "Santa Barbara has always been a place where people are concerned about the environment. Some people think it's because of the infamous 1969 oil spill."

The 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill remains the largest oil spill to have occurred in the waters off California, and the devastation that it left weighs still heavily on the mind of local residents.

Linda Krop: "We need to remember just how important our environment is to us."

Pipeline owner Transcanada is currently seeking a Presidential permit from the U.S. State Department to get the Keystone Pipeline Project to move forward.

President Barack Obama could make the final decision on whether to approve the project later this year or in early 2014.