Company lowers worst-case scenario for California oil spill

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GOLETA, Calif. (KRON/AP) – The operator of the ruptured pipeline that spewed tens of thousands of gallons of oil off California’s central coast is now downgrading the amount of the spill in a worst-case scenario.

Plains All American Pipeline says the estimate of the worst-case volume of oil released is up to 101,000 gallons – about 4,200 gallons less than previously believed.

The Houston-based company is still cleaning up the spill along the Santa Barbara County coastline and recovering oil from its ruptured pipeline so the calculations aren’t final.

Oil blackened beaches in the area and created a 10-square-mile slick in the ocean after the onshore pipeline leaked up to 101,000 gallons on May 19.

The Coast Guard said Monday that the spill has killed one sea lion, nine pelicans and untold numbers of fish.

El Refugio and El Capitan beaches are closed until June 4.

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