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Rep. Steel Requests Major Disaster Declaration for Orange County Oil Spill

October 3, 2021

Joined U.S. Coast Guard for an aerial tour of the damage along the coast

Huntington Beach, CA – Today Rep. Michelle Steel (CA-48) sent a letter to President Biden requesting a Major Disaster Declaration for Orange County following the oil spill that occurred off the coast of Huntington Beach on October 2, 2021. A Major Disaster Declaration makes additional federal assistance available for state and local agencies working to respond to a natural disaster as well as individuals and households impacted.

“It is imperative that the Federal Government assist in recovery efforts. Constituents who live along the shoreline are already reporting oil on the beach and strong odors. Officials are already responding to protect sea life. Dead fish and birds are already being reported on beaches and shorelines. I have serious concerns about the environmental impacts of the spill and applaud the workers who are doing their best to prevent the oil from hitting sensitive wetlands.” Rep. Steel wrote in the letter.

You can read the full letter here and the text below

 

The Honorable Joseph R. Biden

President of the United States

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, D.C 20500

Dear Mr. President:

I write today asking you to authorize a Major Disaster declaration for Orange County California following the oil spill that occurred of the coast of Huntington Beach on October 2, 2021. Officials have estimated that over 130,000 gallons of oil have leaked from an underwater pipeline. I request fast action in approving the Public Assistance and Individual Assistance for all the cities and counties in California that will be affected. Your approval of this request is imperative for a swift recovery and the support of assistance efforts for all Californians.

Federal, state and local officials have been working around the clock to protect residents, the shoreline, and wildlife. Officials identified a 5.8-mile oil plume running roughly from Huntington Beach Pier to Newport Beach. It is imperative that the Federal Government assist in recovery efforts. Constituents who live along the shoreline are already reporting oil on the beach and strong odors. Officials are already responding to protect sea life. Dead fish and birds are already being reported on beaches and shorelines. I have serious concerns about the environmental impacts of the spill and applaud the workers who are doing their best to prevent the oil from hitting sensitive wetlands.

The Coast Guard has established command and is working along with Beta Offshore and California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response. I request that all federal responses be available be provided to assist with the command.

I stand ready to assist any way possible to help our constituents. Your declaration and resources will help make that coordination possible.

 

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