Gov. Gavin Newsom, left, is briefed by Chevron's Billy Lacobie, right, and Jason Marshall of the California Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources during a 2019 tour of the Cymric Oil Field, where a spill released more than 1.3 million gallons of fluid into a dry creek bed outside McKittrick. Since that tour, separate leaks nearby have prompted DOGGR to issue two notices of violation against Chevron.

A high-profile oil leak near McKittrick has resumed its flow after being inactive for months.

Chevron reported that the leak, called a surface expression, reactivated Friday and brought 115 barrels of fluid to the surface in what state regulators described as a slow trickle. The company said the fluid was entirely contained by berms.

Only 12 percent of the fluid, or about 588 gallons, was believed to be crude oil. The rest is produced water, the naturally occurring saltwater that comes up from the ground with oil.

The company said by email it believes the reactivation resulted from its efforts to permanently stop such leaks from recurring in the surrounding Cymric Oilfield.

Since it first erupted in May, the leak has been a major embarrassment for Chevron, which was fined $2.7 million by state regulators over a series of leaks in the area.

California banned surface expressions in April, a little more than a month before a nearby leak began.

The sight of what looked like a river of oil in the Cymric gained notice statewide. The administration of Gov. Gavin Newsom cited the leak last year when it placed a moratorium on cyclic steaming, the high-pressure steam injection technique suspected of causing the leak.

The last time the area leaked oily fluid was in November. At least 1.4 million gallons of oily fluid have come to the surface in the area since mid-May, making it one of the worst recorded accidents of its kind in state history.

Chevron said it is monitoring the situation and that no personnel, wildlife or waterway have been impacted by the latest leak.

"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," the company stated.

"We remain committed to stopping and preventing seeps, consistent with (state regulators') 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 (the state's) request, outweighs the possible risk of a short-term seep reactivation."

John Cox can be reached at 661-395-7404. Follow him on Twitter: @TheThirdGraf.

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(7) comments

Masked 2020

why I didn't Vote for Perez........another shill for Chevron

Kern County Supervisor Leticia Perez, who represents the 5th District seat Rubio once held, worked for Rubio prior to her election and received strong support from him in her race.

…..Local Republican political consultant Stan Harper said Rubio's move is good for business in Kern County.

"He brings a helluva lot to the table for them. Chevron needed a voice with the liberal element in Sacramento," Harper said. "What's good for Chevron is going to be good for all the oil field service companies. I see it as potentially more jobs for Kern County."

Rubio had also bucked Democratic stereotypes over the past two years by joining with local Republican legislators to push for quicker permitting of oil and gas drilling in Kern County.

Rising star Rubio quits Senate to be with family…….Feb 22, 2013

Gene Pool Chlorinator

Why don't you change your handle to CTRL-C CTRL-V because that's all you ever do anymore?

You've used your Word of the Week, "shill" about six times now- it's time to Google another term. Let me know if you need help- I have a pretty broad vocabulary. :)

Masked 2020

Gene Gene Gene...... you poor thing........ I only use "shill" to get your blood pressure up.... and know how you cant handle me "cut copy pasting".... thanks for reading everything I ever commented on.......your input isn't...... shall we say constructive.... but I guess that never was your intent....Peace and Love......Vote Joe 2020

Gene Pool Chlorinator

I can assure you it takes much more than that to get my blood pressure up.

And I don't read anything you cut and paste because I'm able to use Google myself (as can 99% of the people here), so your continued routine is just silly, IMHO...

Surprised you aren't supporting Tulsi- she's the only one left that can actually win, but your good old DNC won't give her a chance to even debate. Guess after she sunk Kamala's ship, they want nothing to do with her...


Governor Newsom will probably want to do a fly-over in the State’s fossil-fuel propelled jet so he can decry the negative impact of leaked and produced oil upon the surrounding landscape and the social injustice perpetrated upon communities by Big Oil.


I wonder if that hair grease he puts on is petroleum or hemp based, hmmm?


Dinosaurs hiccuping . . . ? Bravo Sierra . . . ! Naturally regenerative process as with all 'depleted' oil fields, flowing again . . . here and off the Santa Barbara coast . . . !


And today's another "Star-Spangled Banner" day . . . to dance the MAGA . . . !

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