How Safe is it to Live on Top of 300 ...

How Safe is it to Live on Top of 300 Oil Wells?

Posted in the Montebello Forum

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“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#1 May 25, 2013
A Newport Beach developer for a Houston, Texas oil company wants to build 1200 (mostly) condos on Montebello's last open space. Is there anyone who really thinks that is safe?
Van

Studio City, CA

#2 May 30, 2013
My speculation would not have merit. What would be interesting would be to learn, per past court decisions, what a municipality's liability has been for permitting zoning when (a) an EIR and all opponents to a development raised no health concern, (b) an EIR and some opponents raised some health concern, (c) when much concern has been raised, (d) when an EIR has raised no concern, but there has been at least one expert who has raised concern. To the extent that the municipality would have liability, city hall should be made aware.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#3 May 30, 2013
Van wrote:
My speculation would not have merit. What would be interesting would be to learn, per past court decisions, what a municipality's liability has been for permitting zoning when (a) an EIR and all opponents to a development raised no health concern,(b) an EIR and some opponents raised some health concern,(c) when much concern has been raised,(d) when an EIR has raised no concern, but there has been at least one expert who has raised concern. To the extent that the municipality would have liability, city hall should be made aware.
I, too, would like to see some precedent. Unfortunately, as far as I can determine, this would be the first time this has ever been contemplated.

How about looking at other housing developments built on fewer than 300 wells, or on similarly oil contaminated soil, and multiplying the effects an appropriate amount?
ila

Alhambra, CA

#4 May 31, 2013
sure MADNESS if you ask me. But is that not what BIG CORPORATE greed is all about, never mind the health and welfare of the people living on top of such a mass as long as the pockets of such greedy people are lined with green and i don't mean environmental green, they know nothing about that. I guess they think that their children will be living in mars, so why worry about the earth.
about time

South San Francisco, CA

#5 Jul 2, 2013
ila wrote:
sure MADNESS if you ask me. But is that not what BIG CORPORATE greed is all about, never mind the health and welfare of the people living on top of such a mass as long as the pockets of such greedy people are lined with green and i don't mean environmental green, they know nothing about that. I guess they think that their children will be living in mars, so why worry about the earth.
Don't buy a house there. Boycott it. Let them waste their money building

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#6 Jul 2, 2013
about time wrote:
<quoted text>
Don't buy a house there. Boycott it. Let them waste their money building
The problem is that the city and its residents would assume financial liability when children and their parents start getting cancer, asthma, and other diseases because they allowed it when they don't have to.
Trash Talk

Woodland Hills, CA

#7 Jul 11, 2013
It is unknown how many improperly abandoned wells there are in the hills. Old maps are incomplete, dry holes not logged, redrills, etc.
Some of these old wells just have a wood stake driven in them.
They leak
Little shake could open them up big time
The hills are still uplifting
Drive around the Rideout are of Whittier
Smell the hydrogen sulfide
experience the corrosion, dead plants, animals

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#8 Jul 11, 2013
There are no state records of wells abandoned between about 1911 and the early 1930s. Those are the ones that usually turn up unexpectedly.
Trash Talk

Woodland Hills, CA

#9 Jul 11, 2013
Recall finding unmapped wells during the hasty and unpermitted destruction of the Historic Taylor Ranch and similar findings previously in the Montebello foothills.
Just a preview of things to come.
Not only the wells but the hazardous waste sumps, drilling mud pits, back then just filled in with dirt. Hazardous waste entombed. No idea where the pits are- no maps.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#10 Jul 11, 2013
Trash Talk wrote:
Recall finding unmapped wells during the hasty and unpermitted destruction of the Historic Taylor Ranch and similar findings previously in the Montebello foothills.
Just a preview of things to come.
Not only the wells but the hazardous waste sumps, drilling mud pits, back then just filled in with dirt. Hazardous waste entombed. No idea where the pits are- no maps.
You are right. I believe there were 2 previously unknown, improperly abandoned leaking oil wells.

I don't remember how much extra it cost to remediate those 2 wells, but wasn't it several million? Someone help me out here, please?
Trash Talk

United States

#11 Jul 17, 2013
To remediate and re-abandon (properly "abandon" those hidden wells sent the grading project at Taylor ranch way over budget
Wait- they never had the public hearing or approved the demolition.
BVVC
The Taylor ranch project has never recovered.
How much did Rosie spend on the groundbreaking and her plaque?

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#12 Jul 17, 2013
Trash Talk wrote:
To remediate and re-abandon (properly "abandon" those hidden wells sent the grading project at Taylor ranch way over budget
Wait- they never had the public hearing or approved the demolition.
BVVC
The Taylor ranch project has never recovered.
How much did Rosie spend on the groundbreaking and her plaque?
There was a public hearing, but it was just an agenda item in the city council agenda, and not many noticed it. The council voted to approve the demolition, but didn't set any date, issue an RFP, or anything else. The 'Montebello Historic Society' didn't object.

The ranch project, or 'Taylor Ranch Castle' as it came to be known, was approved, but only partially funded with redevelopment bond money.

The plaque cost about $50,000, and the groundbreaking, contaminated dirt haul-away, unexpected oil well remediation, and partial foundation construction cost several million. Supposedly, there is some bond money left, and as this was an 'approved' project, the city can keep it.

One other problem is that, for some reason, the Taylor Ranch House and surrounding land belongs to the Mntebello Redevelopment Agency, and now is controlled by the State. The city council had agenda items in the last cc agenda that asked the State to cede the Taylor Ranch area, Henry Acuna Park, the City Hall, Police Station back to the city, but I don't know what happened with those items.
Trash Talk

United States

#13 Jul 17, 2013
No lawful public hearing
A public hearing requires publication in a newspaper of record 30+ days in advance.
Notification of residents within 500 ft.(LA County is 1,000 ft.
THERE WAS NO DEMOLITION PERMIT ISSUED
(till maybe after the demolition)
There are rules and procedures for a reason.
Just a quick look at the Abandoned Oil well map (California State Department of Oil and Gas and Natural Resources or DOGGR would have given a heads up where any reasonable party would have gone back to the drawing board on the planning and budget.
The "unexpected" unknown oil wells would have been "expected".
The gang of three committed the City (and/or CRA) to this multi million dollar project with no funding in place.
Just like the scoreboards at the park and the multi million dollar Savercherian Whittier blvd land purchase.
How many "unexpected" oil wells in the hills is anyone's guess but let's not underestimate the budget or the implications.
Montebello has a history of finding abandoned oil wells after houses are built resulting in the demolition of said houses.
Remember that PXP retains "SUPERIOR" property rights for a reason.

Let's not let history repeat itself.
Theolona ranger

United States

#14 Jul 17, 2013
http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/opinion/ci_2...

Induced seismicity.

Sounds a bit like induced childbirth, doesn't it?

But the term is what scientists came up with to describe what happened to the ground after water was extracted and then put back -- small earthquakes began to be tracked.

read more

The UCSC findings should give lawmakers pause -- which is just what should happen with fracking in the state until more is known about the cause and effects on earthquakes.
Studying the environmental and seismic issues doesn't mean the oil will never be extracted -- only that California knows as much as possible about the process.
SB 4 is not the complete answer, but it's a step forward and the protections it would impose are critical before fracking becomes a major force in California.

Thank You Fran Pavely
Where are you Calderon's?
Theolona ranger

United States

#15 Jul 17, 2013
Theolona ranger

United States

#16 Jul 17, 2013
http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/news/ci_22121...

The increasingly common practice of disposing of oil and gas drilling wastewater by injecting it underground can trigger earthquakes, according to federal scientists who studied quakes since 1970 in Colorado and neighboring states.

This is a societal risk you need to be considering," said U.S. Geological Survey scientist Justin Rubinstein, co-author of a report to be presented this week at an American Geophysical Union gathering.

A USGS team based in Menlo Park, Calif., found that the quake in Colorado and a damaging 5.6-magnitude quake in Oklahoma both were induced by disposal of fracking waste underground.

The team focused on the Raton Basin of northern New Mexico and southern Colorado where, from 1970 until 2001, five quakes of magnitude 3 or higher were recorded. They counted 95 quakes of that magnitude between 2001 and 2011, and concluded that oil and gas operations caused the majority, if not all, of the quakes since 2001.

the evidence is convincing that deep burial of drilling waste can trigger quakes,

But I don't think blowing this off is a good idea," he said.
"It's a problem we need to understand.
There's been millions of dollars of damage. If you trigger bigger earthquakes, there's a possibility of worse outcomes."
State criteria include whether quakes have happened before near a well, fault lines in the area and the direction of cracks in rock.
Anonymous

Alhambra, CA

#18 Jul 17, 2013
Whittier Daily News
Montebello Councilman Jack Hadjinian asks for improvements at Taylor Ranch property
http://www.whittierdailynews.com/news/ci_2368...
Trash Talk

United States

#19 Jul 18, 2013
good find
read the comments also
The Gang of three committed the City to three large projects with the bond funding only sufficient for one.
The Sevacherian Whittier blvd land purchase was done AFTER Rosie was defeated in the Nov 2009 election- for much more than the property was worth when compared with the City's purchases of comparable nearby properties.
Even if the bond money is allocated to Taylor Ranch after being freed up by the Statethere is not nearly enough left.
Sell the plaque.
Back on point- old oil field remediation is unknown and very expensive.
PXP might make more money by donating the surface rights to the Rivers and Mountains Conservancy (RMC) s part of the proposed National Park.
The would be "developers" ...
theolona ranger

United States

#20 Jul 21, 2013
There is yet another thread on the Taylor Ranch fraud and boondoggle here
http://www.topix.com/forum/city/montebello-ca...

Montebello Councilman Jack Hadjinian Asks for Improvements at Taylor Ranch Property

story: www.whittierdailynews.com

http://www.whittierdailynews.com/news/ci_2368...

It is still unclear who is responsible for ordering the destruction of the Historic Taylor ranch house without the required public hearing and no demolition permit.
The Hasty and illegal actions by the City and the Vasquez gang of three resulted in serious delays and extra expenses on the project.
viva cristo rey

Pearblossom, CA

#21 Jul 21, 2013
SO they do testing find out its ok, whats the problem, oil and big business scare you? really, bet its all bull look down at your shoes, that's big business, look at the rest of your clothes that's big business too, your car gas or electric big business too I can do this all day and you know that as long as you like it its good big business but if you don't its bad, liar liar with your pants on fire lol who you fooling ? And by the way billions of barrels sit underfoot in Saudi and they don't have a mass cancer die off...think about it? PS: big business don't execute their customers, but big governments do, now thats scarrrrry!

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