Huntington Beach Oil Spill
On October 1, 2021, a mystery oil sheen was observed about three and a half miles off of Huntington Beach, California. The source was later determined to be a leak from the pipeline P00547, associated with the offshore platform “Elly” owned by Beta Offshore, a subsidiary of Amplify Energy. The pipeline may have sustained damage from a ship’s anchor being dragged.
An estimated 588 barrels (27,996 gallons) of crude oil was released and had shoreline impacts in the Huntington Beach and Newport Beach areas. This shoreline oiling impacted 13 protected areas, caused fishing closures in the area, and affected a federally protected bird species (Western Snowy Plover). The incident also occurred during the multi-day Pacific Airshow off Huntington Beach and the spill resulted in the cancellation of the last day of the show.
OR&R spill response specialists reported to Huntington Beach on October 4, and provided on-scene support through oil trajectories, satellite imagery, ERMA® (Environmental Response Management Application) expertise, and SCAT (Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Technique) personnel to aid in oiled shoreline surveys.
An estimated 9,076 gallons of crude oil were recovered. Active response efforts concluded on February 2, 2022. A Natural Resource Damage Assessment was initiated through the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.