SUMMERLAND, Calif. — Santa Barbara County’s south coast has abandoned oil wells dating back over 100 years.
Hillary Hauser, who is the president and executive director of Heal the Ocean, said many of those wells were capped incorrectly and have been seeping oil for decades.
For the next two weeks, an oil rig will be off Summerland capping two of the biggest oil leakers.
They hope the project moves fast enough that they are able to cap a third well to complete the Summerland area.
The oil well capping project is part of SB44. State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson helped write the bill that then-Governor Jerry Brown passed providing $2 million dollars per year to cap leaking wells off California’s coast. The project started in 2018 and allowed for 7 years and $14 million dollars.