MMS to evaluate environmental mitigation measures off Southern California

The US Minerals Management Service has contracted with Applied Marine Sciences Inc. to help evaluate environmental mitigation measures and conditions required for oil and gas projects off Southern California's coast.

The US Minerals Management Service has contracted with Applied Marine Sciences Inc. to help evaluate environmental mitigation measures and conditions required for oil and gas projects off Southern California's coast.

The five-year study will examine methods used to alleviate concerns associated with oil and gas operations on the US Outer Continental Shelf there, the US Department of the Interior agency said on Oct. 30.

"The objective of these requirements is to preserve and protect the quality of the human, marine and coastal environments. Our goal will be to look at whether the measures have achieved their intended purpose or if there are better ways to accomplish the desired protection," said MMS Pacific Region Manager Ellen G. Aronson.

The study contract with Applied Marine Sciences, which is based in Livermore, Calif., calls for ocean fieldwork including observing, sampling and/or monitoring of existing OCS oil and gas operations' mitigation measures and their effects, according to MMS. The Santa Barbara Channel, Santa Maria Basin and San Pedro Basin will be the primary study locations, it indicated.

"We expect that information from the study's scientific analysis will be useful to decision-makers in adapting and/or developing future mitigation measures and project conditions for oil and gas and, perhaps, future alternative energy operations off our coast," Aronson said.

Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC), Reese-Chambers Systems Consultants Inc. and Fugro West will work with Applied Marine Science on the study, MMS said.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com

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