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

  • Martha Clyde
  • Rosemary Fatano
  • Robert & Christine Emmons
  • John & Carrie Givens
  • Danica Damiani
  • Joyce & Fritz Patterson
  • Mimi deGruy
  • Charles Blitz
  • William W. Hildreth
  • William Cornfield
  • B & B Foundation
  • Michael Tish
  • Anne Doubilet
  • Kate Mead & Marty Conoley
  • Thomas & Nancy Crawford
  • Charlene Harris
  • Sallie & Curt Coughlin
  • Roy E. Crummer Foundation
  • Georgia & Ted Funsten
  • Marilyn Magid
  • Kathryn Courain
  • Thomas Dabney
  • David & Monica Fishman
  • Theresa Yandell
  • Robert Coronado
  • Renee Hamaty
  • Charles Perez
  • Julie Shamblin
  • Dan & Rae Emmett
  • Judith Little
  • Eric & Francine Kirsch
  • Capital Group Companies Charitable Foundation/Morrow
  • Peter R. & Sarah de Tagyos
  • D. Maile Ellington
  • Melissa & Michael Costello
  • Marianne & Jim Henry
  • Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation
  • David & Lyn Anderson
  • Jim Garcia & Erin Graffy
  • Mike Furner
  • Georgia Funsten
  • Steven Gilbar & Inge Gatz
  • Aubert & Pamela de Villaine
  • Randy Freedman & Jennifer Freed
  • Graham & Sara Farrar
  • Roger & Sarah Chrisman
  • Elizabeth B. (Betsy) Denison
  • Paul & Downing Denison
  • Neil Dipaola
  • Susan Anderson
  • Amy Cooper
  • Michael La Puma
  • The Jim Ryerson Environmental Fund
  • Peet's Coffee & Tea
  • Anonymous
  • Donald & Diane Jackson
  • Wendy Foster
  • Elizabeth Graham
  • Bob & Alea Cunningham
  • Salvador Cisneros
  • Charlie Graham
  • George & Deanna Gregg
  • Rayethon
  • Mark Schildhauer & Joyce Gauvain
  • Robert Feldman
  • Charles Vinick & Susan Venable
  • Big Speak, Inc.
  • Lindy Kern
  • Ken & Nancy Goldsholl
  • Steven & Deborah Hartzman
  • Joe deBruynKops
  • George Fertitta
  • J.T. & Elizabeth Gerig
  • The Manitou Fund
  • Al & Julia Clark
  • Richard & Lloyd Dallet
  • Polly Turpin
  • Rich & Krista Coffin
  • Tarola Properties
  • Mary Conrad
  • Lance Anderson
  • Christine Gallagher
  • Pat & Maire Radis
  • Daniel Frank
  • Maribeth Hammond
  • Roy E. Crummer Foundation
  • Marcia & John Mike Cohen
  • Suzanne & Edward Eubanks
  • Neil Elliot
  • David & Ruth Green
  • A-Frame Surf Shop
  • Lauri & Michael Hamer
  • J'Amy Brown
  • Margo Rose
  • Heather Kelly Clenet
  • Paul & Tiffany Dore
  • Ganer Stewart
  • Chip & Kelley Bell
  • Brad Fiedel & Ann Dusenberry
  • Cliff & Nicola Ghersen

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