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No to Oil Trains

The residents of Santa Maria, Orcutt, and Lompoc have reason to be displeased with the judgment and service of their representatives in county government. Supervisors Peter Adam and Steve Lavagnino have neglected the health and safety interests of their constituents.

The issue is the proposal to run daily trains, over one mile in length, carrying highly flammable oil and other combustible liquids through our communities.

No jobs in our county are involved. The only beneficiaries would be oil company shareholders as profits rise. The two county supervisors who favor this perilous project are motivated by extreme ideology and/or large campaign contributions from Big Oil.

This plan would put our communities in danger. Government should, foremost, protect our health and safety. The risks of transporting these dangerous cargoes include explosion, derailment, toxic emissions, air pollution, spills, and fires. Hasn’t the spill in May near Refugio State Beach taught these gentlemen that the transportation of oil can never be risk-free and the costs can be too high?

With our interests in mind, Supervisors Farr, Carbajal, and Wolf voted against this oil train plan. Supervisors Adam and Lavagnino argued that we ought to permit these crude oil trains to pass through our communities because “our society is dependent on oil.”

They’re right that we depend upon fossil fuels now. However, oil has a very dark side and should be routed to refineries far from our communities. We ought not allow a daily, hazardous 3 million-gallon oil train through or near Santa Maria, Orcutt, and Lompoc.

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