Santa Barbara Oil Spill Settlement

Tuesday, June 20, 2017 @ 06:06 PM gHale

Santa Barbara City Council members will adopt a resolution to accept $2.5 million from its claims against Plains All American Pipeline.

The city submitted a claim on May 19, 2016 for compensation under the federal Oil Pollution act for losses in its tourism industry following the oil spill along the California shore in 2015.

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A rupture in 2015 on the pipeline system resulted in the release of around 3,000 barrels of oil on Refugio State Beach and along the California coast. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) completed its investigation into the incident and identified external corrosion of pipeline walls as the direct cause of the failure. Quite a few of the indirect causes were preventable, the agency said.

“People kept talking about the Santa Barbara spill. It was on Memorial Day Weekend in particular that was a hard hit. The whole area of course, but in terms of the actual dollar amount spent on marketing to say that our beaches were okay, the loss of revenue in our hotels and sales tax. Those were real losses,” said Mayor Helene Schneider. 

City council hopes to appropriate the money for two different infrastructure projects. $1.5 million will be used for city parks or beaches, specifically for the Cabrillo Arts Pavillion and Bathhouse renovation project.

The remaining $1 million will go toward the One Thousand Steps project. 

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