Appendix F Letter Regarding Chevron Shipping Company's Offshore Lightering Plans

State of California—The Resources Agency

Department of Fish and Game 1416 Ninth Street P.O. Box 944209 Sacramento, CA 94244-2090

June 27, 1996

Mr. Steven Hillyard

Manager,

Government and Public Affairs Division Chevron Shipping Company

555 Market Street San Francisco, California 94105-2870

Dear Mr. Hillyard:

Thank you for providing us with a comprehensive briefing concerning the ''Pacific Ocean Lightering Plan'' earlier this month. Now that the first evolution is nearly completed and we have the initial reports from the United States Coast Guard (USCG), it would appear that the safety issues we discussed at the meeting are being addressed, are working, and will result in a safe operation during the six-month evaluation period.

I am sending this letter to follow up on several items agreed to at the meeting and telephone calls between your office and the Office of Oil Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) as well as to confirm that we will be receiving copies of the documents that you are forwarding to the USCG.



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--> Appendix F Letter Regarding Chevron Shipping Company's Offshore Lightering Plans State of California—The Resources Agency Department of Fish and Game 1416 Ninth Street P.O. Box 944209 Sacramento, CA 94244-2090 June 27, 1996 Mr. Steven Hillyard Manager, Government and Public Affairs Division Chevron Shipping Company 555 Market Street San Francisco, California 94105-2870 Dear Mr. Hillyard: Thank you for providing us with a comprehensive briefing concerning the ''Pacific Ocean Lightering Plan'' earlier this month. Now that the first evolution is nearly completed and we have the initial reports from the United States Coast Guard (USCG), it would appear that the safety issues we discussed at the meeting are being addressed, are working, and will result in a safe operation during the six-month evaluation period. I am sending this letter to follow up on several items agreed to at the meeting and telephone calls between your office and the Office of Oil Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) as well as to confirm that we will be receiving copies of the documents that you are forwarding to the USCG.

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--> As mentioned at the briefing, we are looking forward to reviewing the information obtained during the six-month evaluation and working with Chevron and the USCG on the long-term approach to the lightering program if it proves to be successful. We are mindful of your desire to implement the Pacific Ocean Lightering Plan as proposed and then develop a long-range plan based upon its results and lessons learned. We are prepared to work with Chevron Shipping to attain our mutual goal of continued smooth, safe transfers. If lightering becomes standard practice, it is our understanding that the Middle East crude oil that is imported to southern California waters would be a substitute for Alaska North Slope crude oil which would otherwise be shipped in coastwise transits to the final destination terminals in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Thus, this lightering results in less overall exposure of crude oil to California's coastal resources. Coupled with the use of double-hull tankers traveling the final segment into California ports, as opposed to the older, single-hull Jones Act vessel used in the current Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) trade, we view this operation as a net expansion of the margin of safety for transportation of crude oil into California ports. As also discussed and agreed, for those vessels which would move lightered crude along the coast north to San Francisco, their routing would be in compliance with the voluntary 50-mile standoff routing that is observed by the TAPS trade today. That is, vessels carrying crude would remain at least 50 miles offshore until they intersect with traditional harbor approach lanes. We would like to see those routes depicted as well as those for the shuttle lighterer serving southern California ports. It is our understanding that Chevron plans to have support vessels on scene during transfer operations, and has contracted for two vessels from certified oil spill response organizations to be available if a discharge occurs. This is consistent with the plans that Chevron has on file with our office. We are looking forward to a written specific response plan for the lightering program. We realize that the operation is being done in international waters and does not require a USCG permit (per our communication with the 11th District) and that no formal filing is due to the State. Therefore, we appreciate your willingness to provide us with the information sought. In a related matter, we agree that the use of dispersant may be an appropriate response option in the event of a spill and note that the lightering is taking place within the Regional Response Team (RRT) "quick approval zone". As covered in the meeting at our office, we would like you to consider the use of Corexit 9500 as opposed to dispersant currently available in the West Coast response community. We have reviewed the fate and effect characteristics of Corexit 9500 and find that its application would be more suitable given the characteristics of the shipped product and the environment. Please advise us if you choose to accept this recommendation. In the event that use of such a response option appears viable, we will assist in the expedited approval of their application. As we

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--> committed at the meeting we are prepared to share all of the information we have on the biota in the lightering area to help enable us to make timely, informed decisions should the unlikely need arise. At the meeting we provided information to you about commercial and recreational fishing interests which would likely be operating in the area of the lightering and proposed that you contact them directly. If you need any further information after you have talked to them please let us know. We are appreciative of the fact that the lightering operation now under evaluation is being done in an even more conservative operational manner than current USCG lightering requirements when it comes to factors such as wave height, wind, and weather conditions. In the event that this operation matures into a routine practice in the years ahead, we would like to be provided with an operation manual, or operation plan for the lightering operation with written procedures in place stating under what conditions transfer operations will be suspended, weather, sea state, etc. We are sensitive to the proprietary nature of this information and of course would treat it accordingly. Thank you for your cooperativeness in this important matter. If you have any questions or are in need of additional details concerning the information requested above, please contact Mr. Carl Moore, of my staff, who can be reached at telephone number (916) 327–9938 or at the letterhead address provided above. [original signed by C.F.R.] C. F. Raysbrook Deputy Administrator Office of Oil Spill Prevention and Response CFR.mld