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Oil leak near McKittrick resumes, Chevron aware

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Posted at 5:46 PM, Mar 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-10 16:39:33-04

KERN COUNTY, Calif. — After being inactive for months, an oil spill that started near McKittrick in November 2019 has reportedly resumed.

Chevron said they are aware the leak, called a surface expression, resurfaced Friday.

In a statement the company said:

We take our responsibility to operate safely and in a manner that protects public health, the communities where we operate, and the environment very seriously. We remain committed to stopping and preventing seeps, consistent with CalGEM’s new regulations. In the course of our efforts to permanently stop the GS-5 seep in the Cymric field, some seep reactivations may occur. Our commitment to stop GS-5, per CalGEM’s request, outweighs the possible risk of a short-term seep reactivation.
Jonathan Harshman Communications Advisor Corporate Affairs, San Joaquin Valley Business Unit

Chevron said they were notified on Feb. 28 by regulatory agencies of flow of reservoir fluids to surface in the Cymric field in Kern County. They said this was a reactivation of the previous leak.

As of Monday, a total of 985 gallons were recovered, including approximately 867 barrels of produced water (water from the oil formation that is produced along with the oil) and 118 barrels of crude oil from the flow location. The flow is contained in an earthen berm that has been netted to protect wildlife.

Chevron said there has been no impact to any personnel, wildlife, or waterway as a result of the flow location and they have a vacuum truck available to pull material.