SANTA ANA – California Attorney General Rob Bonta and Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer today announced the filing of misdemeanor charges against Amplify Energy, Beta Operating Company, and San Pedro Bay Pipeline (collectively, “Amplify”) for discharging approximately 25,000 gallons of petroleum from an underwater pipeline off the coast of Huntington Beach in October 2021. The charges are the result of an investigation led by the California Department of Justice, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Orange County District Attorney's Office. As part of a plea agreement entered today in the Orange County Superior Court, Amplify will plead no contest to six misdemeanor charges, pay $4.9 million in fines and penalties to the state and the county in what is believed to be the largest state misdemeanor criminal fine in Orange County history, and be placed on probation for 12 months. Amplify separately will pay a $7.1 million federal fine and also will reimburse federal agencies for expenses incurred during the response to the spill. Watch here.
Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Irvine), Chair of the California State Assembly’s Select Committee on the Orange County Oil Spill said, “When our coastline was devastated by the OC oil spill last year, I promised residents that we would hold responsible parties accountable. I commend the hard work of our local, state and federal investigators and prosecutors for ensuring we made good on that promise. Amplify Energy has agreed to pay millions of dollars in damages and fines. This is a win for OC residents, a win for California’s Natural Resources and a clear message to polluters that they will not get away with negligent and criminal misconduct in our community.”
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Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris represents California’s 74th District including Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, Costa Mesa, Laguna Woods and parts of Irvine and Huntington Beach. She is the Chair of the Accountability and Administrative Review Committee and a member of Banking and Finance Committee; Jobs, Economic Development, and the Economy Committee; Revenue & Taxation Committee and Veterans Committee. After working her way through Yale University, where she double majored in Economics and English, Cottie had a successful 20-year career in finance and technology. She helped to build businesses and led teams at Fortune 500 corporations, small companies and start-ups. Follow the Assemblywoman on Twitter https://twitter.com/AsmCottie or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AssemblywomanCPN.