Marine Conservation Internship:

Restoring our Marine Environment

About EDC: The Environmental Defense Center is a non-profit, public interest law firm that has worked to protect and restore California’s environment and natural resources for more than 30 years. EDC’s work focuses primarily within San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura Counties, including the northern Channel Islands and the ocean waters seaward of this region’s shores. Our mission is to protect and enhance the local environment through education, advocacy, and legal action. Program areas include protecting the Santa Barbara Channel, ensuring clean water, preserving open space and wildlife, and working on climate and energy issues. (See

General Purpose of the Internship: The Marine Conservation Internship is created for students who are interested in pursuing careers in environmental advocacy. The intern will work directly under the supervision of the Marine Conservation Program Director on EDC’s work protecting the tri-counties and the marine environment from impacts of oil development, including ensuring full restoration from past oil development.

Internship Objectives: This project will primarily focus on two interconnected and active issues, the Chevron debris mounds, which are known to contain toxic chemicals, and the future decommissioning of Platform Holly. Located right off our coast, these are two problems that EDC remains highly engaged in addressing. Our objectives are to: (1) determine the best options for decommissioning the platforms off our coast and removing the debris mounds; and (2) use the most environmentally responsible removal technique with the least amount of impact to the environment in future decommissioning activities.

With the help of EDC staff, the intern will:

  • Conduct research on the status of the marine environment around Platform Holly, including the extent to which debris mounds have formed.
  • Research general oil platform decomissioning strategies and how they have evolved in recent years.
  • Write a report summarizing findings on both research topics.
  • Potentially contribute to education materials relating to research.


Required skills:

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong research and analytical skills
  • Ability to work well independently and with managers
  • Strong organizational skills

Time Commitment: Internship requires a minimum commitment of five hours per week/100 hours in Winter and Spring quarters, starting ASAP. This internship includes a stipend, generously made available through the UCSB Associated Students Coast Fund.

If you are interested in joining EDC’s team, send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and references to Kristen Hislop at:, preferably by January 26, 2018We will be reviewing applications on a rolling basis and hope to fill this position quickly. 

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