Oil Leak Causes Ecological Disaster


Mia Hernandez, Junior High Staff Writer

On October 2nd, in Huntington Beach, non-expected devastation occurred. Elly, an oil rig pipeline had spewed hundreds of thousands of gallons of toxic oil into the ocean.

Immediately, press releases were sent out to the public regarding the terrible incident. 126,000 gallons of oil had come from the offshore oil platform. The pipeline had been punctured. This is one of the most immense oil leakages in Southern California history. All of this waste had affected beaches and environmental facilities like Talbert Marsh. The oil is a “post-production crude”. It has a higher level of volatile compounds. During the night of Saturday the pipeline continued to leak.

Undoubtedly, this is an ecological disaster, according to Joy Benedict, a Los Angeles reporter. Dead marine life, fish, birds, and more were being washed up the shore from the toxicity of the crude. Air pollutants from the strong petroleum vapor travel through aerosols and wind can contaminate animals not even close to the oil. “Wildlife is dying. It is very sad.” says the Orange County supervisor. This harmful substance dirties our water. People observing the oil on the beaches can simply see the change in color of the foam from the waves.

Katrina Foley, the Orange County supervisor, has been under the overwhelming spotlight during this cataclysmic event. Foley has spoken out multiple times over the past two days the following incidents. According to Katrina, she said she is committed to making the responsible party pay. Although whoever is guilty of the pipeline leak is being investigated. In response to all this madness, companies, businesses, and boaters affected by the leak will have money reimbursed for the damages incurred. Boaters must call a local department to help clean oil if they do so, to avoid having more oil in the oceans. Foley says they “must work with the system”. This is a recall from a past event, surprisingly in Huntington Beach, California as well. In the 1900’s, a crude oil tank was punctured.

Orange County is very upset. Apparently, they had spent a long period of time building up a habitat and beautiful communities for wildlife and the environment. All to have it ruined just in a day, said OC supervisor.

Via Twitter, Katrina Foley has urged people to stay as far as possible from the shore. At least fifty feet. Orange County Health Care had a press release regarding “residents exposed to oil contaminants”. Regardless of the concentration of the oil, people potentially contaminated have to seek medical care. Petroleum, benzene, and aromatic hydrocarbons can cause health issues. Cough, shortness of breath, vomiting, and more are all minimal symptoms of the oil.

Environment California State Director Laura Deehan had said, “This ecological disaster underscores the urgent need for Gov. Newsom to accelerate our transition away from fossil fuels to a 100 percent renewable energy-powered economy.” No matter what, oil leaks and spills have been happening too often around the world and are damaging our environment little by little. Deehan had also suggested keeping all oil underground and in control away from our shores. This all goes to show the ecological damages that offshore oil drilling has done to our earth. Luckily in relief to all of this, wwccoc.org/donate.html is a website to donate to Huntington Beach Wetlands and Wildlife. They are partnered with Orange County in response to all of this hardship.