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Refugio oil spill still impacts the industry a year later - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Refugio oil spill still impacts the industry a year later

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One year after one of the biggest oil spill disasters on the South Coast, oil companies in the area seem to be struggling.

On May 19, 2015, more than 140,000 gallons of crude oil spilled from a ruptured pipeline into the ocean off Refugio State Beach. It affected not only the environment, but the oil industry itself.

Venoco, which shut down its South County platform, filed for bankruptcy in March. A month later, the company filed a $12 million lawsuit against its partner, Plains All American Pipeline, for the ruptured pipe that spilled the oil.

ExxonMobil was also involved. A company spokesperson told KSBY, "We continue to perform preservation activities related to the shut-in to ensure the safety and integrity of our operations and facilities. We appreciate the county's diligence and will continue to work closely with local officials as we safely remove inventory from our storage tanks."

In regards to ExxonMobil's transportation of oil from its storage facility, the company says it is limited to 30 truckloads per day and will take three to six months to complete.
     
A lot is still to be determined when it comes to this area and the future of oil business here.
     
ExxonMobil said, "We remain focused on the safe removal of inventory, but will continue to evaluate all of our options to resume full operations."
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