Venoco Oil Pipeline Decommissioning Check Presentation

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SENATOR MONIQUE LIMÓN AND ASSEMBLYMEMBER BENNET PRESENT CHECK FOR THE DECOMMISSIONING OF THE VENOCO OIL PIPELINE

(SACRAMENTO) – Senator Monique Limón (D- Santa Barbara) and Assemblymember Steve Bennett (D-Ventura) presented a check of $1,050,000 to the City of Carpinteria and Santa Barbara County to decommission the abandoned Venoco oil and gas pipelines.

Venoco owned the pipelines before they filed for bankruptcy in 2017. In the absence of an owner, the Office of the State Fire Marshall turned to the County of Santa Barbara and the City of Carpinteria to pay for adequately abandoning these facilities. 

Senator Limón worked diligently with colleagues in the Legislature and successfully got the approval of over 1 million dollars for the City of Carpinteria and the County of Santa Barbara to decommission abandoned pipelines safely.  

“This is important investment will ensure these pipelines are correctly decommissioned, protecting the health and safety of the surrounding communities and our local environment,” said Limón. “The bankruptcy of oil companies and abandonment of their infrastructure has been a focus in a lot of my work in the California Legislature, not only ensuring taxpayers don’t bear the brunt of the cost, but most importantly the environmental and health consequences it brings.”

Senator Limón is hopeful that recent changes in the law will ensure that oil companies do not continue to leave local municipalities responsible for their abandoned infrastructure.  

“The responsibility to remove the aging oil infrastructure in the Central Coast has been shifted for far too long. It is time to restore our coastline and surrounding environments as we work to end these threats and protect our natural resources. I am pleased to work with Senator Limón on this decommissioning of the abandoned Venoco oil and gas facilities.” 

Last week, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 47 (Limón), allowing the California Geologic Energy Management Division (CalGEM) to collect and spend up to 5 million dollars a year on plugging and abandoning deserted oil wells. SB 47 prevents potentially high taxpayer costs by creating an industry-funded mechanism to employ workers to plug deserted wells.

 

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