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Following Santa Barbara Oil Spill, New Analysis, Video Reveal Devastating Toll of California Pipelines

621 Pipeline Incidents Since 1986 Have Caused $769 Million in Damage

SANTA BARBARA, Calif.— As cleanup crews struggle with the Santa Barbara oil spill caused by a leaking coastal pipeline carrying oil from offshore drilling platforms, a new analysis released today reveals a troubling history of pipeline accidents in California. An independent analysis of federal records has found that since 1986, more than 600 oil and gas pipeline leaks, spills and other incidents in the Golden State have caused at least $769 million in damages, 200 injuries and almost 50 deaths.

new time-lapse video documents every “significant pipeline” incident in California — along with their human and financial costs — from 1986 to 2014. On average California suffers 23 significant pipeline incidents a year, according to the data.

“The Santa Barbara spill is just the latest example of fossil fuel pipelines’ toxic threat to people and wildlife in California,” said Miyoko Sakashita, the Center for Biological Diversity’s oceans program director. “These dangerous pipelines highlight the broader risks of oil production in our ocean and on land. Drilling and fracking for oil in the Golden State results in fouled beaches, dead wildlife and serious risks to human health and safety.”

Read more.

Check out our time-lapse video.

Contact: Miyoko Sakashita

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Media Contacts:
Mike Stark, Communications Director
mstark@biologicaldiversity.org, (520) 623-5252 ext. 315

Steve Jones, Media Specialist – Oceans
sjones@biologicaldiversity.org, (415) 436-9682, ext. 340

Andy Parker, Media Specialist – Endangered Species
aparker@biologicaldiversity.org, (503) 310-5569

Patrick Sullivan, Media Specialist – Climate Change, Fracking
psullivan@biologicaldiversity.org, (415) 632-5316

Russ McSpadden, Communications Associate – Media Photos
rmcspadden@biologicaldiversity.org

Banner photo courtesy Flickr/loggerhead sea turtle courtesy Flickr/DamienDuToit