SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Assemblymember Tasha Boerner’s (D-Encinitas) bill to extend the sunset date for the Scripps Institution of Oceanography to conduct research on coastal cliff landslides and erosion in the county of San Diego by one year was signed by Governor Gavin Newsom.
“Bluff failures are a constant threat to beachgoers and coastal neighborhoods throughout California,” said Assemblymember Tasha Boerner. “AB 72 ensures we have enough time to consider the data-driven outcomes holistically, which is necessary to keep our communities safe in the face of sea-level rise. I’m grateful for the Governor’s signature on this critical legislation.”
In 2021, Assemblymember Boerner’s AB 66 directed Scripps researchers to collect data on bluffs at Beacons Beach in Encinitas and Del Mar. The deadline extension requested in AB 72 is due to significant permitting delays at Beacons Beach, which prevented the timely installation of several key sensors, including a subsurface high-sensitivity strain meter used for detecting small-scale ground movement.
“AB 72 can significantly advance research on the dynamics of cliff collapse along California's coastlines,” said Mark Zumberge, a Research Geophysicist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. “With the Governor granting an extension from AB 72, we aim to gain a better understanding of the processes leading up to cliff failures. Our goal is to learn how deformations are impacted by tides, large surf, groundwater, and rainfall to see if we can answer the question of whether signals exist that can forecast where and when an increased risk for collapse is developing. We thank Assemblymember Tasha Boerner for her commitment to learning if we can create an early warning system and keep our communities safe.”
Without a project extension, full data collection would only cover one full winter when coastal erosion and landslides occur more frequently, limiting the overall project outcomes and recommendations. This is a critical step in creating an early-warning notification system, much like we have for earthquakes.
The research will be completed no later than January 1, 2026 and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography will provide the State Legislature a report by the end of March, 2026.
Assemblymember Tasha Boerner represents the 77th District, which encompasses Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar, and the coastal communities of La Jolla south to Downtown and Coronado. You can learn more about Assemblymember Boerner at a77.asmdc.org, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.