The enormous leak at a natural gas storage field near Porter Ranch was unstoppable for three and a half months, but about a week ago, the beginning of the end began for the well that has spewed thousands of metric tons of methane into the air: the flow of natural gas was halted. The actual well-killing is still going on, but it's looking like everything's going as planned and residents who fled their homes (and the nosebleeds and nausea health officials attributed to an additive in the gas) are gearing up to return to them. New video from the Southern California Gas Company (via the LA Daily News) was taken last week, and shows just how far the situation's progressed.
In December, cameras set up to capture the invisible-to-the-naked-eye gas documented a huge plume of gas erupting from the hills where the storage field is located. Even older video showed an eerie cloud of gas floating through the area like something straight out of a horror film. But the new February 12 video doesn't have anything like that; it seems to show a normal landscape, free of ominous methane clouds. That will likely be of very little comfort to the soon-to-be-returning locals, who are wary of the company's efforts to make the area safe for their return and have repeatedly asked for more rigorous testing of the air by independent agencies.
· Watch SoCalGas video after gas leak near Porter Ranch stopped [DN]
· Watch Methane Gas Eerily Float Over the Hills Near the Huge Porter Ranch Gas Leak [Curbed LA]
· New Aerial Video Shows the Terrifying Hugeness of the Porter Ranch Gas Leak [Curbed LA]
· What Happens in Porter Ranch Now That the Enormous Gas Leak is Finally Plugged? [Curbed LA]