Offshore Oil and Gas Support Facility Siting Study

by Deborah Fleischer, Environmental Science Associates, San Francisco, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '91


It has been estimated that the Bodega Basin, which extends offshore of Sonoma County, contains four areas of high potential for oil production, with a total of up tp 195 million barrels of recoverable oil reserves. Under a high-case scenario, the County could expect up to three offshore platforms and associated onshore support facilities. These facilities could include oil and gas processing facilities, onshore and nearshore pipelines, marine terminals piers and crew and supply bases. Sonoma County recently hired Environmental Science Associates (ESA) to assess the potential demand for onshore oil and gas support facilities and to identify appropriate sites, if any, for onshore support facilities based on an inventory of coastal resources and existing policies. This paper summarizes the results of the study and includes a discussion of the screening criteria used to identify areas not appropriate for onshore oil and gas support facilities. Given the current crisis in the middle east, OCS Lease Sale 119, currently delayed, could become reactivated, creating a demand for onshore oil and gas support facilities along the Sonoma County coastline. The study concludes that there are no appropriate sites along the Sonoma County coastal zone for industrial onshore oil and gas support facilities and recommends that the County amend its LCP to specifically restrict oil and gas support facilities in the coastal zone.

Subject Headings: Offshore structures | Offshore platforms | Industrial facilities | Terminal facilities | Non-renewable energy | Basins | Nearshore | Gas pipelines | Middle East | California | United States

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