Large amounts of oil leaked into the ocean off the coast of California over the weekend, believed to have come from a burst pipeline at a nearby oil rig. American media, including the Los Angeles Times. Several dead fish and birds have washed ashore in recent hours on Huntington Beach, located about 35 miles from downtown Los Angeles.
A spokesman for the municipality estimates that about 480,000 liters of oil have ended up in coastal waters. The oil slick extends over an area of more than 33 square kilometers. Although the leak has not yet been completely repaired, the first repair work has already been carried out. The cause of the breakthrough is unknown.
Authorities are calling on everyone to stay away from the oil-stained beach for the time being. The concrete consequences of the leak on biodiversity, among other things, have yet to be revealed, but officials tell the LA Times already take into account ‘significant ecological consequences’.
The spill of fuel is already greater than in 2007 in the San Francisco Bay. Due to a collision of a container ship with the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, more than 200,000 liters of so-called bunker fuels (crude fuel oil and kerosene) leaked into the bay at the time. About 6,800 birds were killed.