Mission


Heal the Ocean focuses on wastewater infrastructure – sewers and septic systems – as well as ocean dumping practices that have contributed to ocean pollution. We are focused on Santa Barbara County, but our methods are now serving as a model for other coastal communities across the country. 



Our mission maintains five definite goals:

  1. WASTEWATER UPGRADE & RECYCLING. Wastewater is waste(d)water. HTO actively works to secure grant funding for wastewater treatment plant upgrade and recycling projects that turn the water around for reuse rather than ocean disposal.
  2. SEPTIC SYSTEMS. Septic systems operate on the principle of leaching, and must be removed from inappropriate beach and creek areas. “Cluster overuse” must be dealt with by sewer hookup, which we facilitate by working with homeowner associations.
  3. NON-POINT SOURCE POLLUTION. Heal the Ocean plays an active role in the development of storm water permits, and has initiated a study of groundwater ocean interaction; we lobby for increased street sweeping and enforcement to prevent illegal dumping into creeks and storm drains.
  4. OCEAN DUMPING. Dredge and fill operations in the name of “restoring beaches” will not be performed unless materials are suitable and clean for beaches, and do not cause smothering of near-shore sea life.
  5. LANDFILLS. We take an active role in the prevention of toxic pollutants leaching into the sea from landfills.

We employ engineers, researchers and scientists, lawyers, GIS mappers, and other experts to locate sources of pollution, assess their significance and find solutions. We perform cost feasibility studies for upgraded wastewater management methods. We have conducted DNA tests in watersheds as well as virus tests in the ocean. To meet our objectives, we work with city, county and state agencies to initiate new programs and comply with those that already exist.

Proud Corporate Supporters of Heal the Ocean

Individual Donors

  • Marcia & John Mike Cohen
  • William Cornfield
  • Marianne & Jim Henry
  • Gail Kennedy
  • David & Ruth Green
  • Andrew & Konnie Gault
  • Cliff & Nicola Ghersen
  • Lauren Hawksworth
  • Roy E. Crummer Foundation
  • David & Lyn Anderson
  • The Manitou Fund
  • Ann Crawford
  • Roger & Sarah Chrisman
  • Sarah Kass
  • Joe & Barbara Godley
  • Kate Mead & Marty Conoley
  • James Hawkins
  • Jeffery & Monica Fried
  • Kathy & Bill Crevier
  • Charlie Graham
  • Eva Marie Saint & Jeffrey Hayden
  • Hui Koon Khor
  • A-Frame Surf Shop
  • Jessica Scheeter & Zach Gill
  • Margo Rose
  • Dennis & Suzanne Shanelec
  • Santa Barbara Shellfish Company
  • Craig Rice
  • John & Carrie Givens
  • Jim Garcia & Erin Graffy
  • Nicholas & Margaret Dewey
  • Caolyn Hubbs
  • Graham & Sara Farrar
  • Susan and Carol Robertson
  • Yvon & Malinda Chouinard
  • Marie Morrisroe
  • Scott Waters
  • Eric & Francine Kirsch
  • Charles Perez
  • Richard & Lois Gunther
  • Anne Doubilet
  • Frances Lufkin
  • Robert & Prudence Sternin
  • Marilyn Magid
  • Plum Goods
  • Kathryn Courain
  • Elizabeth B. (Betsy) Denison
  • Georgia Funsten
  • Richard & Lloyd Dallet
  • Will Davies
  • Robert Feldman
  • David & Monica Fishman
  • Michael Tish
  • Richard Coleman
  • Heather Kelly Clenet
  • Big Speak, Inc.
  • Julie Shamblin
  • J.T. & Elizabeth Gerig
  • Jody Thomas
  • Robert & Christine Emmons
  • Andrew & Adrianne Davis
  • Joyce & Fritz Patterson
  • Bob & Alea Cunningham
  • Amy Kunze
  • Christine Ryerson
  • Dan & Rae Emmett
  • Jennifer Oakley
  • Nancy Roberts
  • Gebb Turpin
  • Al & Julia Clark
  • Brittingham Family Foundation
  • D. Maile Ellington
  • Nancy Acosta
  • The Jim Ryerson Environmental Fund
  • Randy Freedman & Jennifer Freed
  • Anonymous
  • Hiroko Benko
  • George & Deanna Gregg
  • Rosemary Fatano
  • Dr. Jeffrey & Dr. Monica Fried
  • Fardad Rahimian
  • Pat & Maire Radis
  • Cooper Allebrand
  • Tracy Fernandez & Hyla Fetler
  • Christine Ebert
  • Eric & Julie Friedman
  • Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation
  • David, Jeannie & Roxy Clark
  • Kathy B. Gallo
  • Mike Furner
  • Robert & Stan Fishman
  • Maribeth Hammond
  • B & B Foundation
  • Roy E. Crummer Foundation
  • Nora McNeely Hurley & Michael Hurley
  • Dr. & Mrs. John A. Clark
  • Hoyt Tarola
  • Tarola Properties
  • Jack Finnegan
  • Cotty & Isabella Chubb

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