Money and Business

Venoco bankruptcy may open up Carpinteria land sites

55-acre site and pier among the holdings

CARPINTERIA, Calif. - There may be some changes very soon with the Venoco property in Carpinteria because of the ongoing bankruptcy proceedings.

Mayor Fred Shaw says Venoco is selling off its assets to pay any debts before dissolving the company. Bankruptcy was filed in April.

Recently the company proposed relinquishing the leases back to the federal government. Shaw says Venoco would then be winding down production at the end of this year.

In Carpinteria, the Venoco holdings include a 55-acre site adjacent to City Hall, an oil and gas processing facility, related pipelines and a pier.

The processing facility receives oil and gas from platforms Gail and Grace in the Santa Barbara Channel.

Originally all these assets were owned by Chevron. The sale to Venoco took place in 1998.

Shaw said, "So far Venoco has been unable to find a buyer for the federal leases associated with Gail and Grace as well as the onshore facilities."

Once shut down Chevron would take over the property in order to decommission the wells, pipeline, and onshore processing facility.

This would effectively end nearly all of the oil and gas production in Carpinteria.

Up the coast, Venoco is also working with the State Lands Commission on the removal and decommissioning of Platform Holly in the near shore waters off Isla Vista, along with the Goleta onshore facilities.

Venoco took a massive business blow when the Plains All-American Pipeline became disabled due to corrosion and a destructive leak in May of 2015. It has not been operational since then. 

An effort by Venoco to move its oil by trucks was denied. 

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