An 11-mile long pipeline owned by Plains All American Pipeline, based out of Houston, TX has ruptured, spilling the equivalent of 500 barrels of crude oil onto the Santa Barbara County coastline.
As of Tuesday night, 4 miles of the beach had been effected, but there is fear that westerly winds could push the oil further south.
Many politicians and environmentalists have spoken out. Rep. Lois Capps said, “I am deeply saddened by the images coming from the scene at Refugio. This incident is yet another stark reminder of the serious risks to our environment and economy that come from drilling for oil.”
We all remember the BP oil spill back in 2006 and officials are putting their efforts together to prevent a disaster such as that one. The U.S. Coast Guard has already begun cleaning up the spill.
Since California is a huge tourist attraction, environmentalists hope that it won’t effect the state’s economy. “California’s beaches, including the wildlife and recreational opportunities they support, are a major part of our state’s identity,” says Brigid McCormack, executive director of Audubon California. “Time and time again we’re reminded that the benefits of putting oil so close to our natural treasures are never worth the risk.”
Officials will be updating the media about the unfortunate event in about 20 minutes. Stay tuned!