Gas storage will never be safe as long as it’s done by humans because of rampant greed in our species and until frac’ing is outlawed everywhere.
SoCalGas agrees to pay $1.8 billion settlement over 2015 Aliso Canyon gas leak by Brian Melley, Associated Press, Sept 27, 2021, USA Today
LOS ANGELES – Thousands of families sickened and forced from their Los Angeles homes after the nation’s largest-known natural gas leak have reached a settlement of up to $1.8 billion with a utility, attorneys said Monday.
The settlement with Southern California Gas Co. and its parent company, Sempra Energy, will compensate 35,000 plaintiffs from the 2015 blowout that took nearly four months to control.
The Aliso Canyon blowout led to the largest-known release of methane in U.S. history and was blamed for sickening thousands of residents who moved out of homes near the San Fernando Valley to escape a sulfurous stench and maladies including headaches, nausea and nose bleeds.
The plaintiffs alleged personal injury for their illnesses and property damage to their homes. SoCalGas spent more than $1 billion on the blowout – with most going to temporarily relocate 8,000 families.
The utility has faced more than 385 lawsuits on behalf of 48,000 people.
“Our goal has always been obtaining justice for the men, women and children who were failed by SoCalGas throughout every turn of this catastrophe,” attorney Brian Panish said in a statement.
Plaintiffs alleged they suffered personal injury and property damage after a natural gas storage well failed and uncontrollably released nearly 100,000 tons of methane and other substances into the atmosphere over 118 days.
SoCalGas said it would record an after-tax charge of approximately $1.1 billion this month and expects total settlement payments of up to $1.85 billion. The agreement is subject to about 97% of plaintiffs accepting it and could be reduced if fewer agree.
“These agreements are an important milestone that will help the community and our company work toward putting this difficult chapter behind us,” said Scott Drury, CEO of SoCalGas.
File photo shows a gas gathering plant on a hilltop at the Southern California Gas Company’s Aliso Canyon storage facility near the Porter Ranch neighborhood of Los Angeles. Attorneys for families sickened and forced from their Los Angeles homes after the nation’s largest-known natural gas leak have reached a $1.8 billion settlement with the utility company.
Matt Pakucko, founder of Save Porter Ranch, issued a statement repeating his call for the permanent shutdown of the facility, where natural gas is stored beneath a mountain in vacant, old oil wells.
“You can’t put a price tag on human suffering,” he said. “SoCalGas’ devastating blowout will never be behind us until the Aliso Canyon storage facility is shut down and the danger it poses to the community is permanently eliminated. We are nowhere near a resolution.”
State regulators found the gas company failed to investigate previous well failures at the storage site and didn’t adequately assess its aging wells for disaster potential before the Oct. 23, 2015, blowout.
SoCalGas previously reached a $120 million court settlement with the state attorney general and agreed to a $4 million settlement with Los Angeles County prosecutors after being convicted in Los Angeles Superior Court of failing to quickly report the leak to state authorities.
Refer also to:
2016: SoCalGas Co spewing oily gas (and mystery frac chemicals?) poisoning 1.8 Million people across LA’s San Fernando’s valley. Is frac’ing or fluid injection to enhance oil recovery partially to blame for Porter Ranch disaster?
2015: Regulatory Failure, Corporate Failure, Inspection Failure, Integrity Failure, Casing Failure, Safety Failure, Greed Trumps All: Regulator & SoCalGas Co. knew casing was corroding, failing with major leakage problems at Porter Ranch gas storage facility more than a year before catastrophic leak
From Save Porter Ranch et al recent Class Action legal filing, an excellent read.
2015: 2,258 families in temporary housing, 111 staying with family or friends, 3,162 in placement process. Growing environmental disaster in LA: Monster industry-created methane leak revealed in new aerial infrared video. What happens if SoCalGas can’t fix their leak? Was the leaking gas frac’d? Is it radioactive?
2015: L.A. city attorney sues SoCal Gas over gas leak making Porter Ranch homes “unlivable.” Why isn’t Alberta’s Attorney General suing Encana & AER for illegally frac’ing a community’s drinking water supply, then engaging in Charter violations, fraud to cover it up?
The proposed well is located approximately 1 km from the boundary of the CrossAlta Gas Storage & Services gas storage reservoir. CrossAlta, a joint venture of TransCanada Energy and BP Canada, uses the depleted Amoco East Crossfield Elkton pool to store natural gas for customers transported on TransCanada’s mainline.
In 2001, another nearby well (the 7-25 well) was allegedly fracked in the BQ “A” pool. Subsequently, it became apparent that there was communication in the 7-25 well between the BQ A and the Elkton, CrossAlta’s storage reservoir. CrossAlta argued that the fracking of the 7-25 well induced communication with its storage reservoir. CrossAlta objected to Kallisto’s application on the basis that the drilling and fracking of the proposed well would similarly pose a significant risk to the integrity of its gas storage reservoir.
Investigations determined industry’s leaking gas from underground storage migrated nearly 7 miles, killing two people