California’s Justice Department is now investigating the cause of the oil spill

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In this Sunday, Oct. 3, 2021, file photo, cleanup contractors deploy skimmers and floating barriers known as booms to try to stop further oil crude incursion into the Wetlands Talbert Marsh in Huntington Beach, Calif., after an oil spill off Southern California.

Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP


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Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP


Environment
A massive oil spill in the Pacific Ocean has reached the Southern California coast

The Coast Guard said the anchor of one large ship, or possibly multiple, may have hit the pipeline, cracking the concrete casing, but may not have caused the large crack that was discovered last week. The pipeline was also dragged along the sea floor more than 100 feet, according to the Coast Guard.

Amplify Energy has been identified as the company responsible for the pipeline leak, according to Bonta’s office.

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This still image from video taken Monday, Oct. 4, 2021, and provided by the U.S. Coast Guard shows an underwater pipeline that spilled tens of thousands of gallons of oil off the coast of Orange County, Calif. Video of the ruptured pipeline shows a thin crack along the top of the pipe that could indicate a slow leak that initially was difficult to detect, experts said.

U.S. Coast Guard via AP/AP


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U.S. Coast Guard via AP/AP

This still image from video taken Monday, Oct. 4, 2021, and provided by the U.S. Coast Guard shows an underwater pipeline that spilled tens of thousands of gallons of oil off the coast of Orange County, Calif. Video of the ruptured pipeline shows a thin crack along the top of the pipe that could indicate a slow leak that initially was difficult to detect, experts said.

U.S. Coast Guard via AP/AP

The Coast Guard said so far about 5,500 gallons of crude have been recovered from the ocean.

The oil has spread along the California coast with reports of oil coming ashore in San Diego County, some 50 miles from the original site.

Clean up crews and investigators have found dozens of dead birds and other wildlife, but experts have said the impact on the environment could have been far worse.

On Monday, things were looking up for Huntington Beach and its residents.

Officials there reopened its shoreline after testing of the water showed there was no detectable amounts of oil-associated toxins in the ocean.

«The health and safety of our residents and visitors is of the utmost importance. We understand the significance our beaches have on tourism, our economy, and our overall livelihood here in Huntington Beach,» said Huntington Beach Mayor, Kim Carr in the announcement. «It is important that our decision to reopen our shoreline and water be based on data and that we continue to monitor the water quality going forward.»

  • CAlifornia
  • oil spill

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