No impact to wildlife seen, state officials say
The California Department of Fish and Wild released this update Friday night on the cleanup underway at the side of a large oil spill in the Cymric Oilfield near McKittrick:
Cleanup operations have been ongoing and will continue this weekend at the site of a surface expression of water and oil at the Cymric Oil Field in Kern County.
Pumps have been used to recover fluid and excavators are working to remove solids created by mixing dirt with the fluid.
At this time, a total of 25,260 barrels (1,060,920 gallons) of fluid (oil and water) have been recovered from the site.
Fluid continues to be released from one section of the site, which is removed by pumps.
The Unified Command approved an incident action plan for the next week, which includes strategies for cleanup and ongoing environmental assessments.
No visibly oiled wildlife have been observed or reported to date, and no impacts to drinking water supplies are anticipated, according to the State Water Resources Control Board.Wildlife Operations staff have developed enhanced avoidance and minimization measures to ensure enhanced protection of wildlife as cleanup operations evolve and expand.
On July 22, Chevron notified DOGGR of two additional flow locations, approximately 50 feet south of a previous location reported on June 23. The additional locations are flowing intermittently, and the fluids are contained in the same streambed. Efforts to stop the flows are continuing.
On July 23, Unified Command approved a phased cleanup plan. A berm will be built to separate the first cleanup area from other areas, where fluids continue to be extracted remotely.
No visibly observed wildlife have been seen since the expression was reported, and no impacts to drinking water supplies are anticipated. Staff from OSPR and the Oiled Wildlife Care Network are continuing to monitor the area, using drone imagery, cameras, databases, and field observations to assess wildlife activity and potential impacts. Hazing techniques have also been used to discourage wildlife from entering the area.