California Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency in Orange County following what’s been described as California’s worst oil spill in nearly three decades. Officials now say as many as 144,000 gallons of oil have leaked from a pipeline connected to an offshore oil platform off the coast of Huntington Beach, about 30 miles south of Los Angeles. Investigators are looking into whether a ship anchor punctured the pipeline. Beaches in the area are expected to be closed for months. This is Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer.
Todd Spitzer: “Orange County District Attorney’s Office is deeply concerned about the wildlife impact that has occurred on our shores and the economic impact to our community. And somebody’s going to pay for that, criminally or civilly.”
Environmental groups are calling on authorities to ban offshore oil drilling. Monica Embrey of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Dirty Fuels campaign said, “How many of these oil disasters do we have to witness before our elected leaders understand that there is no safe way to drill or transport dirty fossil fuels?”