An infrared video shot by environmental group ‘Earthworks’ allegedly shows the extent of the gas leak affecting the Porter Rancho community near Los Angeles. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
Infrared view of California gas leak
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION)
STORY: An infrared video allegedly shows the extent of a gas leak affecting the Porter Ranch community north of Los Angeles.
The video, shot by environmental group ‘Earthworks,’ shows what appears to be plumes of gas billowing from the hills where the gas well is located that is the site of the underground methane leak.
California Governor Jerry Brown on January 6 declared the natural gas leak that has been sickening nearby residents for more than two months an emergency, calling for alternatives to stop the underground leak if existing efforts fail.
Southern California Gas Co, which operates the well, is trying to stop it by drilling a relief well to reach a damaged pipeline, then injecting fluids and heavy mud into it.
The leak was discovered on Oct. 23 at a well used for natural gas storage in Aliso Canyon just outside Los Angeles’ Porter Ranch neighborhood, which is home to more than 30,000 people.
Officials from Southern California Gas, a division of Sempra Energy, say they expect to stop the leak in late February to late March.
Thousands of residents were forced to move over the holidays, with the gas company underwriting their temporary housing.
The leak, which state officials have said accounted at its peak for a fourth of California’s 20 million metric tons a year in greenhouse gas emissions from methane, is believed to have been caused by a broken injection-well pipe several hundred feet beneath the surface of the 3,600-acre (1,457-hectare) field.
The governor’s office said it had taken steps to coordinate the local, state and federal response to the leak, which at last count was releasing more than 30,300 kilograms of methane per hour, and stop it as soon as possible.