The governor on Sunday signed Assembly Bill 353, which allows the state to resume paying into the Oil Trust Fund, the primary source to cover the costs of cleaning up oil wells within Long Beach’s Tidelands.
Oil is still a big part of the city’s budget, and it’s expected to stay that way until at least 2035. Even then, the job of abandoning city-owned wells won’t be entirely finished.
Ending oil production in Long Beach will cost an estimated $1.2 billion. The state is responsible for $900 million of that, but has only set aside $300 million to fund it.
Though the city has already put aside $43 million to pay the costs associated with closing down oil wells, it would still have to raise another $38 million to meet the lowest estimate for abandonment costs in 2035, the year city officials have said for the last few months that they plan to end oil production.