A comprehensive look at how well oil and gas production facilities in Santa Barbara County are complying with safety and environmental regulations will be delivered to the Board of Supervisors when it meets Tuesday in Santa Maria.
Supervisors also will consider a $1.4 million loan to develop affordable housing project in Santa Maria and a policy update that would give local vendors a boost in obtaining county contracts for durable goods as well as receive a second quarter budget update.
The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in the Board Hearing Room of the Joseph Centeno Betteravia Government Administration Building, at 511 E. Lakeside Parkway.
In December 2017, supervisors asked the Planning and Development Department staff to return in a year with a report on the status of oil and gas operations in the county.
The department coordinated development of the report with agencies that have regulatory jurisdiction over oil and gas facilities in Santa Barbara County.
Those include the County Fire Department and Environmental Health Services Hazardous Materials Unit’s Certified Unified Program Agency, as well as the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District.
Two state agencies with oversight authority also participated — the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, often referred to by its acronym DOGGR, pronounced “Dogger,” and the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board.
The result was a wide-ranging yet concise look at the 25 onshore producers — 30 for the APCD, which has extended jurisdiction — which develop oil and gas from 2,480 active wells that’s processed at 125 facilities.
It also looks at the 16 offshore platforms that send oil and gas to onshore processing and transportation facilities, eight of which send to facilities within county jurisdiction, although only one of those is currently sending products to a Santa Barbara County facility.
While APCD has regulatory powers over the platforms, the county only has jurisdiction over onshore facilities.
The other eight platforms send their products to facilities in Ventura County and are regulated by agencies there.
Two significant pipeline systems that transport crude oil within and out of the county are also included in the report.
In addition to outlining the regulatory and inspection duties of the various agencies, the report contains a summary of violations and spills as well as charts showing which companies received notices of violations from county agencies and how much they were fined over the period of 2015 to 2018.
The report goes beyond simply what’s operating today to look at proposed onshore projects, including Aera Energy’s East Cat Canyon Redevelopment Project, ERG’s West Cat Canyon Revitalization Project and PetroRock’s UCCB Energy Project.
Aquifer exemptions for underground injection of waste water prepared by the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources and the Regional Water Quality Control Board are reviewed in the report.
Federal oil-related issues summarized in the report are the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management plan for new offshore oil leases and the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed leasing program that would allow additional oil and gas exploration and development that would include hydraulic fracturing on public lands.