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In Oregon, the beaches belong to the people. As part of Oregon's tradition of environmental stewardship, the Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition serves as the guardian of the public interest for our coastal region. Oregon Shores is dedicated to preserving the natural communities, ecosystems and landscapes of the Oregon coast while conserving the public's access.  Oregon Shores pursues these ends through education, advocacy, and engaging citizens to keep watch over and defend the Oregon coast.
 Oregon Shores Endorses ‘Outdoor School for All’
Kids conducting their own nature study. Photo by Cathy Tronquet.
Ballot Measure 99, the “Outdoor School for All” proposition, would ensure that all Oregon middle school students gain the opportunity for a week of hands-on environmental learning. Oregon Shores urged members to sign the petition that succeeded in placing the measure on the ballot, and we now advocate that those who care about both education and the environment vote for the measure in November.
Outdoor School is an Oregon legacy that teaches important life skills and boosts academic achievement, giving students a learning opportunity they can’t get in the classroom. Research shows that children who attend Outdoor School do better in school; their attendance improves and they’re more motivated to learn.
Today, the average child spends seven hours a day on a screen and less time outside than ever before. Outdoor School allows them to unplug and reconnects them with science and nature. It fosters a strong sense of responsibility, stewardship and connection to the land, teaching them there’s more to the outdoors than Pokémon Go.
However, there currently is no dedicated source of funding for this Oregon educational tradition, meaning that many students are left out. Measure 99 dedicates a portion of lottery funds to make Outdoor School available for all.
For more information or to find out how you can help support, volunteer or spread the word, and to pledge your vote, visit

 Vested Rights Threat Spurs Court Appeal
Oregon Shores has gone to court, seeking a “writ of review” of what we consider a gravely erroneous decision by the Clatsop County Board of Commissioners. The commissioners voted to allow would-be developers, the Aspmo family, to build 15 houses on forested land where they would never be permitted under conventional land use planning, due to their claim of a “vested right.” We submitted our ... MORE 
 Proposed Shoreline Alteration Draws Oregon Shores’ Opposition
Neskowin landslide which homeowners hope to cover with rockfall mesh. Photo by Bill Busch.
A plan by Neskowin homeowners Ken and Judy Graham to stabilize the eroding slope beneath their house has drawn an argument in opposition from Oregon Shores. The Grahams have applied to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), which is responsible for permits to alter the shoreline, for permission to install rockfall mesh over a previous installation that has been failing. We argue that this is the wrong solution to the wrong problem.
The Grahams’ home at the southern end of Neskowin was threatened by a landslide in 2012. On the basis of an emergency permit, they installed riprap at the toe of the landslide, and rock facing on the slope above. While the riprap held, the rock placed on the slope did not, and much of it wound up on the beach. (To their credit, the Grahams had it removed.) They now seek a permit to stabilize what is left of the rock on the slope with mesh, which we contend is unlikely to be effective and will certainly be unsightly.
The claim is that wave erosion threatens the house and property, justifying the new project. However, by the Grahams’ own testimony, the riprap itself has been effective and continues to protect the bluff from wave action. The riprap is therefore not the issue, and Oregon Shores is not opposing its being left in place. The threat to the house is due to a landslide, not erosion from the ocean side. Rock and rockfall mesh will not halt the slide. It may be that nothing can arrest the landslide, but we argue that the best hope is not a rigid structural approach, but vegetating the slope with native vegetation. This would work with rather than against nature, and would also improve the appearance of the slide area, rather than turn it into a greater eyesore, diminishing the beauty of the area for all who visit it.
OPRD’s regulations require that all non-rigid alternatives, including vegetation, be explored before a hardened shoreline protection structure is allowed. We believe that the department should follow its own rules and insist that natural vegetation be given preference in this case, to everyone’s benefit. We await OPRD’s decision.

 Rockaway Riprap Applicant Turns to Court
The saga of developer Tai Dang’s campaign to be allowed to riprap his controversial rental property in Rockaway may have come to an end, as far as the City of Rockaway Beach is concerned, but this is like one of those Hollywood movies that seems to have come to a satisfying conclusion, until a new twist is suddenly introduced. Dang's attorneys have now gone to court, seeking a "writ of mandamus" ... MORE 
 Clinton Campaign Responds to Appeal for ‘Blue Economy’
The ocean supports a blue economy, fishing included. Photo by Alex Derr.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has responded personally to Oregon Shores’ demand for a campaign pledge to work for ocean health and the “blue economy” the ocean supports. “Our nation and the world depend on a resilient, sustainable, and healthy ocean ecosystem,” the former Secretary of State assured us. “Like you, I believe the time has come to ensure the future vitality of our oceans by building a new, innovative, and sustainable blue economy.”
Okay, she wasn’t responding just to Oregon Shores, but to a letter signed by 115 ocean leaders, Oregon Shores Executive Director Phillip Johnson among them. And no doubt the letter from Clinton in reply was drafted by a staffer. But still.
The group letter was arranged by Blue Frontier, a national advocacy group for marine conservation. Non-profit organizations being non-partisan, the identical letter was sent to both Clinton and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. No reply to date from the Trump campaign.
Clinton has released a two-page response on what she will do to protect our coasts and ocean. With just over two months until the election, this marks the first time in the campaign that a candidate has fully addressed the daunting issues confronting America’s public seas. In her letter she lays out a range of solutions she says she will act on if elected, including growing the “Blue Economy,” supporting coastal adaptation to climate change, ending international pirate fishing, expanding sustainable and transparent U.S. fishing and seafood practices, and ratifying the Law of the Seas Convention that has been held up by the U.S. Senate for over 20 years.
The ocean leaders who signed the letter that she responded to include CEOs of seafood companies and other businesses, directors of major science labs, aquariums and diving organizations, well known ocean explorers, authors, artists, ocean conservationists, members of Congress, and former heads of the EPA and NOAA.
“Faced with a cascading series of disasters from overfishing, pollution, loss of habitat, and climate disruption, we’re heartened to see Secretary Clinton commit to restoring the blue in our red, white and blue,” said David Helvarg, Executive Director of Blue Frontier, the ocean conservation and policy group that initiated the letter to the candidates. “We hope her statement will spark a broader public discussion on the state of the ocean and what citizens can do to turn the tide. We also look forward to learning what Mr. Trump plans to do for our public seas and the communities, both human and wild, that depend on them.”

 Coos County Ratifies Pro-LNG Decision
We have waited a long time for the official word, even though we were certain we knew what it would be. Finally, after many delays, the Coos County Board of Commissioners has affirmed most elements in the earlier decision of its appointed Hearings Officer, approving land use permits for the proposed Jordan Cove LNG (liquefied natural gas) export facility, and overruling the many contrary ... MORE 
 No New Oregon LNG Threat Appears
In April, Oregon LNG withdrew its application to develop an LNG (liquefied natural gas) export facility on the Skipanon Peninsula in Warrenton. Oregon LNG informed both the city of Warrenton and the state's Department of Environmental Quality that it would not continue with its appeal of the Warrenton hearings officer's decision to deny the permit on the grounds of interference with fish habitat ... MORE 
 Photographers Invited to Help Oregon Shores Illustrate Our Work
As you've likely noticed if you visit this website regularly, Oregon Shores uses numerous photographs of the shoreline and of the entire coastal region. We illustrate articles on this website, and we also use photos in newsletters and e-bulletins and in various other publications, such as CoastWatch handouts. We’re constantly searching for new images of the coast. Some we seek for their sheer ... MORE