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Venoco files for bankruptcy, Platform Holly to be decommissioned - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Venoco files for bankruptcy, Platform Holly to be decommissioned

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Oil company Venoco, LLC announced Monday that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and Platform Holly in the Santa Barbara Channel will be decommissioned.

The company quitclaimed its interests in the South Ellwood Field, which includes Platform Holly and Goleta Beach Pier leases offshore. The State Lands Commission will take over those leases, effectively ending commercial oil and gas production at that location in the Santa Barbara Channel. The California Coastal Sanctuary Act prohibits the issuance of any new offshore oil and gas leases. 

The Commission will be responsible for developing a plan to decommission the facilities and plug and abandon the approximately 32 wells on state property. Officials say they will work with the City of Goleta, Santa Barbara County, and other community members to develop that plan.

Platform Holly has not produced any oil since the Refugio Oil Spill on May 19, 2015, when an onshore pipeline owned by Plains All American Pipeline ruptured and spilled approximately 143,000 gallons of oil into the ocean.

It's expected to take approximately three years to fully decommission and remove Platform Holly. According to the State Lands Commission, the closure leaves approximately 85.1 million barrels of recoverable oil in the ground.

Other assets owned by Venoco are expected to be sold through the bankruptcy process.

Related links:
South Ellwood Filed Lease Quitclaims Fact Sheet

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