Chennai Oil Spill

Our friends in India are battling a new oil spill that began in the early morning hours of Saturday, January 28, 2017.  The cargo ships BM Maple (UK flagged) and Dawn Kanchipuram (Indian flagged) collided about 4 km outside the mouth of Kamrajar Harbor, itself about 24 km north of Chennai Port, Chennai in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.  The Dawn… Read more »

Ballooning Plastic

A few distinct, but unrelated experiences have brought the issue of plastic balloons in the ocean into frequent conversation this week. It began with last Saturday’s annual California Coastal Cleanup Day.  I happened to be out on Santa Cruz Island with my son’s Boy Scout Troop.  Our 30 scouts made quick work of the debris… Read more »

Ojai Oil Tank On Fire

A now more than 12 alarm fire erupted within the past hour in Ojai, California (in western Ventura County).  The incident was reported at 8:35 a.m. near Highway 150 and Topa Lane roughly here ( 34.438417°, -119.132719°): The incident was originally thought to be a burning oil derrick, but subsequent reports have clarified that it is instead a… Read more »

Rio’s Toxic Olympic Waters

Every two years the Olympic Games roll around and we are treated to endless commentary and an amazingly small amount of actual sport (at least on NBC Universal Channels that have a stranglehold on U.S. broadcasts via their $7.75 billion contract).  Outside of the NBC hype machine, we have seen a pattern in recent years of… Read more »

Ball of Confusion: Hall Canyon 1 Month On

It is almost one month since our most recent energy infrastructure foundering: Crimson Pipeline’s release of crude oil into the hills above the City of Ventura.  Lots of developments continue to burble up as we all try to figure out the next surprise.

Hall Canyon Spill

Yet another start of the summer and yet another pipeline break on the south coast.

Refugio Oil Spill History: Timeline Part 1

The one-year anniversary of the Refugio Oil Spill has brought with it a raft of renewed interest in this oil spill and the consequences as we now see them.  We’ve done a good deal of media over the last couple of weeks.  Add to that plenty of breaking stories from all quarters (often speaking to… Read more »

Toast that repair guy…

Raise that Glass The one year anniversary of the Refugio Oil Spill is fast approaching.  Lots of folks have been asking my colleagues and me about the impacts of this spill now that we have the perspective of a year.  Well, first and foremost, I’m hugely appreciative to the repair man.

Coastal Commission Pushback

To say that the California Coastal Commission has been in something of an upheaval in recent months is an understatement.  The insanity even rubbed off on me and one of the boards I serve on (but that is a story for later).  The ouster of the Commission’s Executive Director in closed-doored session and with barely… Read more »

CSU COAST 2016 Annual Meeting

Our consortium for the study of the coast and ocean here in the California State University System (aka CSU COAST) just held our annual meeting in Long Beach.  While this group’s focus is the entirety of our coastal and marine environment, much of this has a direct bearing on oil spills and how we go about… Read more »

Latest
  • Refugio Spill Public Lecture

    A few weeks ago saw me up in Simi Valley speaking to folks from young to old about what began last May 19 at Refugio Beach.  I always enjoy giving one of our monthly installment of the CSU Channel Islands Library Lecture Series, an array of public lectures held across Ventura County open to all comers.  This presentation had… Read more »

  • Summerland Oil…Again

    For the past several days we have been seeing unusually heavy oil deposition along the beaches in Summerland, centered just below Lookout Park.  While we have been in a period of higher than normal seep activity for the past year or so, this tarring event seems beyond a mere seep event.  This smacks of some… Read more »

  • The Great Oil Miscalculation

    It is hard to underestimate the influence our Federal Energy Information Agency (EIA) has on energy markets.  Their annual and quarterly reports, littered with predictions, drive investments, public policy, and global understanding of energy production and consumption. So the recent coming to terms with the fact that the EIA has of late been hugely overestimating American… Read more »

  • Refugio Spill Seminars

    Santa Barbara Channelkeeper is hosting a series of Refugio Oil Spill-related talks through the end of March 2016.  It looks like there will be some great presentations!

  • More Plastics…

    Reporters are continuing to cover our work on documenting the magnitude of plastic pollution across our world ocean and the potential impacts from all this unintended petroleum waste, both macro and micro.  This week our CSUCI team headed over to downtown Ventura for a presentation to the general public on what we have found to date…. Read more »

  • Offshore Fracking Halted Temporarily

    The Santa Barbara Environmental Defense Center’s 2014 challenge to Interior’s policy of offshore fracking with limited public notice has met with success by the courts.  The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and Bureau on Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) have agreed to re-analyze the environmental dangers of offshore fracking, with their environmental impact assessment of the process/policy to… Read more »

  • After the Spill: Oil & Coastal Wetland Loss

    Recovery in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon has been something of a slow recovery when it comes to the most impacted communities (mid- and deepwater).  More readily-viewable areas have seen mixed recovery. Much of the discussion in Louisiana has centered around the payments or “getting back to work.”  A new documentary, After The Spill,… Read more »

  • Mapping Spill Impacts

    We saw some really neat efforts to map oil spills and explore impacts associated with spills in spatially-explicit ways at last summer’s ESRI Users Conference in San Diego.  This very brief rundown of what was on display shows how the science of documenting oil spill impacts has embraced geospatial science.  GIS is no longer a secondary concern.  Rather, it… Read more »

  • Fire threatening oil infrastructure

    The current Solimar Beach Fire raging north of the City of Ventura is threatening numerous oil drilling and storage areas adjacent to Pacific Coast Highway along the Rincon coast of northwestern Ventura/southeastern Santa Barbara County.

  • Leadbetter Classic: Surf & Pollution Ed

    Lakey Peterson Bowl   Today part our our sandy beach team trekked up to Santa Barbara’s Leadbetter Beach for the second annual Lakey Peterson Keiki Bowl/Leadbetter Classic.  This mix between surf competition and camp is a collaboration between pro surfer Lakey Peterson, Santa Barbara surf school Surf Happens, and the Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation.  In addition to… Read more »