California Oil Spill Closes Beaches, Endangers Wetlands

Underwater pipeline leak the apparent cause. 

Saturday afternoon, the U.S. Coast Guard said an oil slick had been spotted off the Southern California coast. It established a unified command to respond. Later Saturday night, they believed they found a pipeline leak was responsible for the spill, and they notified the company that operates the pipeline to shut down operations. 

Some residents, business owners, and environmentalists are questioning whether authorities acted quickly enough to contain the spill, said to be one of the largest in recent California history. Booms were deployed on the ocean surface Sunday to try to contain the oil while divers sought to determine where and why the leak occurred.  

The spill has fouled the sands of Huntington Beach and could keep area beaches closed for weeks or longer. There was a race to find animals harmed by the oil and to keep the spill from harming any more sensitive marshland. Several cities, including Laguna Beach, have announced their beaches are closed. 

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife warned of a “threat to public health” from consuming any fish and shellfish taken from near the shoreline from Huntington Beach south about 20 miles to Dana Point. 

An estimated 126,000 gallons of heavy crude leaked into the water and has reportedly covered 13 square miles. 

As the Lord Leads, Pray with Us…

  • For federal, state, and local officials as efforts are made to clean up the oil spill off the California coast. 
  • For the members of the Coast Guard who are working to protect the U.S.
  • For the organization to effectively and efficiently repair the leak in the pipe and to help restore the environmental damage. 
  • For people to heed California Fish and Wildlife alerts regarding possible contaminated seafood and fish. 

Sources: Reuters, CNN 


Back to top