Sunday, July 22 , 2018, 10:07 am | A Few Clouds 71º


Local News

Oil Spills at Greka Energy Facility in Santa Maria

Meanwhile, the Central Coast Water Board orders the company to pay $400,000 in a settlement

After an extended period of quiet, Greka Energy, an oil company known for its numerous spills in Santa Barbara County during the past few years, made headlines again this week after another spill.

Crews from Greka, the county and the California Department of Fish & Game responded to Monday’s incident.

Santa Barbara County Fire Department spokesman Capt. David Sadecki said that a fire crew, accompanied by a hazardous materials inspector, worked quickly to clean the spill, which occurred at a Greka oil lease at 6151 Dominion Road in Santa Maria.

Sadecki said Greka reported the incident, and a report submitted to the California Emergency Management Agency states that about 250 barrels of produced water — a drilling byproduct — mixed with crude oil was spilled. Although he indicated that exact spill amounts are difficult to determine, Sadecki said that no known environmental impacts had occurred.

On May 13, the Central Coast Water Board — an agency tasked with protecting water quality along 300 miles of coastal area stretching from southern San Mateo County to northern Ventura County — ordered Greka to pay $400,000 as part of a settlement surrounding disposal of 70,000 cubic yards of oily dirt left over from its petroleum excavation activities.

Greka faces another $800,000 in fines if it fails to meet the deadlines specified in the agreement, and is still subject to prosecution from civil liabilities related to its past spills.

Noozhawk staff writer Ben Preston can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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