Members of the press and public can direct inquiries to the California Coastal Commission's Deputy Director of Communications, Noaki Schwartz. Public records are also available upon request.


Coastal Commission Awards $2 Million in Whale Tail Grants

The California Coastal Commission has approved 56 new Whale Tail Grants totaling more than $2 million to non-profit organizations, community groups, and schools for projects and programs that provide educational experiences focused on coastal protection, public access, and environmental justice.


Coastal Commission Selects Dr. Kate Huckelbridge to Lead Agency

Dr. Kate Huckelbridge, 47, has been selected as the first woman to lead the California Coastal Commission in its 50-year history. She will succeed current Executive Director Jack Ainsworth, who will be retiring in February. Dr. Huckelbridge currently serves as the Commission’s Senior Deputy Director and has worked for the agency since 2009 in a number of different roles, including as a senior environmental scientist and as the Deputy Director over the Energy, Ocean Resources and Federal Consistency Unit. She also served as the Tribal Liaison for the Commission. Click here for more information.

The Coastal Commission awarded almost $3.2 million dollars to 91 WHALE TAIL® Grants

The Coastal Commission awarded almost $3.2 million dollars to 91 WHALE TAIL® Grants on February 9, 2022. WHALE TAIL® Grants connect people to the California Coast and its watersheds through experiential education, stewardship, and outdoor experiences, and emphasize projects that engage communities that have historically had few such opportunities. This grants round will support projects from the Smith River in Del Norte County to Tijuana Slough, and in many inland locations. Click here for more information including a list of the funded projects.


Draft Critical Infrastructure Sea Level Rise Planning Guidance Available for Comment

California Coastal Commission staff have released the Public Review Draft of Critical Infrastructure at Risk: Sea Level Rise Planning Guidance for California’s Coastal Zone. With a focus on water and transportation infrastructure, the goal of the draft guidance is to promote resilient coastal infrastructure and protection of coastal resources by providing local governments, asset managers, and other stakeholders with policy and planning information to help inform sea level rise adaptation decisions that are consistent with the Coastal Act. Comments are due by September 24, 2021 and can be sent to Read the press release about the document here.


Tens of Thousands of Volunteers Take Part in a Month of Action at the 36th Annual California Coastal Cleanup

San Francisco – Under the most unprecedented circumstances in the event’s history, tens of thousands of Californians took part in a month-long cleanup effort as part of the 36th Annual California Coastal Cleanup. Ordinarily held on just one day each September, the state’s largest annual volunteer event organized by the California Coastal Commission, was spread out over the entire month of September. read more


Martin’s Beach Lawsuit


Sacramento, Calif. The state of California filed a lawsuit on January 6, 2020 to restore full public access to Martins Beach, a popular San Mateo County beach that was abruptly shuttered after Silicon Valley billionaire Vinod Khosla bought the adjacent property in 2008. read more

Coastal Commission approves sweeping new environmental justice policy to increase coastal protections for all Californians

LOS ANGELES - The California Coastal Commission unanimously approved a landmark environmental justice policy to help ensure equitable access to clean, healthy, and accessible coastal environments for communities disproportionately overburdened by pollution. read more


Explore the California coast with the Coastal Commission’s new YourCoast iPhone app!

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. _ The California Coastal Commission on Thursday released a free app that will allow the public to explore state’s iconic coastline from their iPhone. The YourCoast mobile phone application was developed in an unique effort by tech entrepreneur Sean Parker and a state agency devoted to protecting and enhancing California's coast and ocean for the public. The result of a 2013 enforcement settlement, the Apple iOS YourCoast app provides a free guide to 1,563 beaches, trails, parks and visitor serving destinations in California. read more

Coastal Commission transfers 22 acres in Santa Monica Mountains near Backbone Trail entrance to public.

The California Coastal Commission unanimously approved a settlement that would transfer more than 22 acres of land near the Backbone Trail trailhead in the Santa Monica Mountains to the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority..... read more

Coastal Commission issues $1 million fine for Coastal Act violation, orders sea wall removed.

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. _ The California Coastal Commission has fined two Laguna Beach property owners $1 million for the unpermitted rebuilding of an ocean-front home and, ordered the prompt removal of an adjacent seawall that has damaged a public beach.... read more


Coastal Commission Chair's Letter on Scientist Dispute

Dear Mr. Lewis et. al: I am in receipt of your February 3, 2017 letter demanding an immediate investigation into a Coastal Commission staffer who mentioned a Scripps study in a recent talk on desalination. It is regrettable that one of your member entities has drawn your organization into this unnecessary conflict, which stems from a persistent and intentional misrepresentation of facts that are easily verifiable... read more

2016 Year in Review

2016 was a historic year for the California Coastal Commission and the California coast. In keeping with the spirit of the country’s flagship coastal management law, the California Coastal Act, on its 40th anniversary, the Commission found numerous opportunities throughout the year to implement coastal protection policies in bold and creative new ways. From advancing women’s equity in big wave surf contests, to levying the agency’s first administrative fines for public access violations... read more


Department of Finance issues non-audit services review of Coastal Commission

The Department of Finance, Office of State Audits and Evaluations has completed its non-audit services engagement on the California Coastal Commission's (Commission) fiscal management and internal controls for the period July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. The enclosed report is for information and use. The Commission's response to the report recommendations and our evaluation of the response are incorporated in this final report... read more

Governor Brown and Coastal Commission Call on President Obama to Protect Federal Waters Offshore California from Oil and Gas Leasing

Dear Mr. President: In 2014, I joined the Governors of Oregon and Washington to oppose the inclusion of any new oil and gas leasing along our shared coast in the federal government's 2017-2022 leasing program. Your Administration excluded the Pacific region in the final plan... read more

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and the California Coastal Commisson Challenge Off-Shore Fracking

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and the California Coastal Commission today filed a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Department of the Interior's final environmental assessment, which clears the way for hydraulic fracturing (fracking), acidizing, and other advanced well treatments on the Pacific Outer Continental Shelf off the coast of California. In addition to extending our reliance on fossil fuels, research links these types of well stimulation treatments with increased water and air pollution, as well as the potential to harm marine life... read more

Coastal Commission Selects Two Female Attorneys to Lead the Coastal Protection Agency in 2017

The California Coastal Commission unanimously selected Dayna Bochco and Effie Turnbull-Sanders as the panel’s newest chair and vice chair during its annual election of officers. Bochco acknowledged the agency’s difficult year and said she is committed to moving the commission forward in a positive way... read more

Malibu Property Owners Fined Millions for Blocking Public Access

For the first time since the California Coastal Commission gained the authority to levy fines for public access violations, commissioners approved a $4.185 million penalty against a Malibu Beach property owner for blocking access to a three mile stretch of coastline for over a decade. Warren and Henny Lent rented out a beach front home they purchased in 2002 for as much as $1,000 a night, while blocking the public from accessing Las Flores Beach with a locked gate and an unpermitted private staircase. Renters posted online reviews praising the exclusivity of the beach... read more

User Group Study and Public Access Questionnaire for Lunada Bay in Palos Verdes Estates, Los Angeles County

The Coastal Commission is researching the experiences of visitors to the bluff top park, shoreline, and coastal area at Lunada Bay in Palos Verdes Estates, Los Angeles County. The purpose of the research is to gather information about the personal experiences of visitors who have accessed or attempted to access Lunada Bay and use that information to help address alleged threatening behavior and actions... read more

Watch LiveStream of California's Coastal Act: The Next 40 Years Event

2016 marks the 40th anniversary of the California Coastal Act. Enacted in 1976, the Act has guided coastal development and protection for decades. But today the California coastline arguably faces its greatest challenges yet relating to the balance between preservation and development, the Coastal Commission’s relationship to other government agencies and jurisdictions, projected impacts of sea-level rise and related coastal change, and conflicts over public access, including access for underserved communities... watch more

Coastal Commission Breaks Saltwater Ceiling for Women Surfers

The California Coastal Commission has granted a one-year permit to the organizers of the Titans of Mavericks surf event but declined their request for a multi-year permit, criticizing the group for not preparing a comprehensive plan for the inclusion of more women. “We have reached a historic milestone in that a woman’s heat is being added at the Titans of Mavericks,”... read more

Now Accepting Applications for the Executive Director Position

The California Coastal Commission seeks a dynamic leader dedicated to public service, energized by hard-work and motivated by the complex and interesting challenges encountered in protecting California’s treasured coast... read more

Coastal Commission Update on Big Sur Grants from Sean Parker Settlement

The $1.5 million in grants resulting from the Coastal Commission’s settlement with entrepreneur Sean Parker have substantially enhanced public access, recreation and the conservation of natural resources in the Big Sur area, according to a recent review by the agency. "The idea that we were able to work with Sean Parker on a creative solution that resulted in trails being repaired, families learning about nature and at risk kids getting to camp near the ocean for the first time is incredible,"... read more

Coastal Commission Files Brief in Support of Protecting Public Access at Martins Beach

The California Coastal Commission has filed an amicus brief in support of the Surfrider Foundation’s ongoing effort to restore full public access to Martins Beach. Surfrider sued Martins Beach I LLC and Martins Beach II LLC alleging that property owner, billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, shut the public out of a popular San Mateo County beach for over six years. They argued that the move was a violation of the Coastal Act, which requires maximizing public access and recreational opportunities along the coast... read more

Coastal Commission Supports Affordable Housing Policies for Carmel

The California Coastal Commission unanimously approved an amendment to Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Local Coastal Program (LCP) that provides incentives for builders to create more affordable housing in the city’s core commercial and residential areas. Such incentives will allow builders to construct more units than the zoning otherwise allows, provided that a certain percentage of those units is set aside for lower-income households. So-called “density bonuses” are one way to encourage developers to consider adding affordable units as part of market-rate projects... read more

Commission Chair, Steve Kinsey, Makes Statement on Diablo Canyon Shutdown

“This is a big step forward for the California coast, and for our state’s commitment to renewable power generation. Both PG&E and the many dedicated environmental organizations that worked to make this day possible are to be congratulated for this historic agreement. The Coastal Commission looks forward to working with PG&E on public access and a resource protection plan for this critical link in the California Coastal Trail.” ~ Steve Kinsey. Chair, California Coastal Commission

Coastal Commission Urges Closure of Venice Redevelopment Loophole

The Coastal Commission has asked the city of Los Angeles to stop its practice of approving the demolition and reconstruction of homes in Venice by mischaracterizing them as remodels. “It’s been deeply frustrating for all parties and could easily be avoided at the city level,” said Commission Chair Steve Kinsey, who sent a letter to the city’s planning director urging action on the matter... read more

Developer Requests Postponement on NewPort Banning Ranch (Th11c)

Newport Banning Ranch project developers on Friday requested the Coastal Commission postpone a May 12th hearing to determine whether they could build on a 401-acre coastal parcel in Southern California. The proposal is for 895 homes, a 75-room resort hotel, 20 bed hostel and 45,000 square feet of retail space on what has been for decades an active oil field. Staff had recommended approval with conditions to help protect much of the site which is Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Area, or ESHA... read more

2015 Year in Review, 'Protecting the Coast, Preparing for Climate Change'

The past year brought major successes to the protection of California’s coast and the legacy of the California Coastal Act, a visionary law signed by Governor Jerry Brown in his first term nearly 40 years ago. The Coastal Commission protected sensitive coastal and marine resources from Crescent City to San Diego, and defended the public’s right to access and share in Californian’s amazing coastline, while approving most of the developments that it reviewed... read more

Expert Panel Releases Draft Phase 2 Report on Subsurface Intakes for Proposed Poseidon Huntinton Beach Desalination Facility

This report evaluates whether subsurface intake designs would be a feasible method for Poseidon Water to obtain seawater for its proposed desalination facility in Huntington Beach, California. The report is a product of coastal development permit review, Coastal Commissioner recommendations, and a scientific and technical review conducted by an independent expert panel convened by Coastal Commission staff and Poseidon Water with assistance and facilitation from CONCUR, Inc. ... read more

Governor Proposes Increasing Commission's Budget by $3 Million

Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today proposed a $122.6 billion General Fund budget plan for 2016-17 that makes significant increases in funding for education, health care and state infrastructure, while bolstering the state's Rainy Day Fund and paying down state debts and liabilities. When Governor Brown took office, the state faced a massive $26.6 billion budget deficit and estimated annual shortfalls of roughly $20 billion. These deficits, built up over a decade, have now been eliminated by a combination of budget cuts, temporary taxes and the recovering economy... read more


Coastal Commission Prevails in Dana Point Beach Access

Just in time for summer, the California Coastal Commission is pleased to announce the opening of a new public pathway down to one of Malibu’s most hard-to-reach beaches, nicknamed “Billionaire’s Beach.” The opening of this new accessway comes after a decade long legal dispute between the commission and a Malibu couple required to provide public access as part of a permit for a new beach house... read more

How Do You Get To Your Coast?

YourCoast is a free, online web app with all the valuable information from the California Coastal Commission's popular California Coastal Access Guide and Experience the California Coast series. YourCoast is essential for anyone seeking to explore California's 1,270mile-long shoreline via smart phone, tablet, or personal computer. The app contains information for 1,530 coastal accessways, displayed on colorful base maps, with details on the physical setting, facilities, and visitor activities - such as sandy beaches or tide pools, disabled facilities and wheelchair accessible trails, restrooms and parking, campgrounds, trails and visitor centers... read more

Coastal Commission Opens Public Pathway to Malibu's Carbon Beach

Just in time for summer, the California Coastal Commission is pleased to announce the opening of a new public pathway down to one of Malibu’s most hard-to-reach beaches, nicknamed “Billionaire’s Beach.” The opening of this new accessway comes after a decade long legal dispute between the commission and a Malibu couple required to provide public access as part of a permit for a new beach house... read more

State Joins Lawsuite Over Martins Beach

The California State Lands Commission and the California Coastal Commission have filed an application to submit a joint amicus curiae brief in the appeal of the Friends of Martin’s Beach case. Both state agencies have submitted the brief in Friends of Martin’s Beach v. Martins Beach 1, LLC et al (Case No. A142035) in the First District Court of Appeal to protect the state’s interest in the property known as Martins Beach in San Mateo County. The beach has been a popular destination for surfing, fishing and other recreational uses for decades... read more


Public Access Restored at Paradise Cove Beach in Malibu

Martins Beach owner Vinod Khosla has made a series of wild charges against the California Coastal Commission, including coercion and unfair treatment. Khosla purchased a property near Half Moon Bay that has had a long and obvious use by the public. He then closed the road historically used by the public to access the beach. But under the Coastal Act of 1976, closing the road requires a development permit... read more

Public Acccess Restored to Ontario Ridge

The Coastal Commission has approved a final plan to restore public access to a popular hiking trail near Avila Beach in San Luis Obispo County. The plan provides details about how the property owner must remove barbed wire and other fencing, gates and “No Trespassing” signs that were placed along the Ontario Ridge Trail that leads from the City of Pismo Beach to Pirates Cove in San Luis Obispo County... read more

Martins Beach reflects Californians' choice to protect coastal access

Martins Beach owner Vinod Khosla has made a series of wild charges against the California Coastal Commission, including coercion and unfair treatment. Khosla purchased a property near Half Moon Bay that has had a long and obvious use by the public. He then closed the road historically used by the public to access the beach. But under the Coastal Act of 1976, closing the road requires a development permit... read more