My name is Amelie, and I am 10 and 3/4 years old. On my last visit to California, I went to a beach in Santa Barbara with my family, and I was disappointed to see that we couldn’t get into the water because there was oil and tar and a strong smell of gasoline on the beach. We are guessing that this was because there were 27 oil rigs by the coast, and 7 were very close to the shore, and they caused both oil and tar to wash up on the beach. On top of that, I am concerned about the sea life in the water. So much oil and tar cannot make the water there a healthy environment to live in. I can’t help but wonder if, in 10 years or so, lots of beaches will look like that because the ocean always moves.

I’m not sure if anything can be done, but I do have some ideas on how to improve the state of polluted beaches. For one thing, you might want to do something about the oil rigs, like build a wall to keep the polluted water separate from the healthy water. Do we really need so many oil rigs? I really don’t think that 27 oil rigs are needed. The community of Santa Barbara could host a community clean-up day, and all pitch in to help tidy up the messy beaches. On the other hand, the oil company should pay for the damage done to the beach and wildlife, or at least pay to clean up the beach. Why should harmless sea life and citizens have their beach messed up because of the oil rigs?

I hope that you can help me shed light on this issue so that when other kids and I are older we can still enjoy a good swim, or a walk on the beach, or even have a good surf, as will our kids, and their kids, and their kids’ kids’ kids!


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