A U.S. District Judge has denied Exxon Mobil’s proposal to reactivate its idle Santa Ynez Unit offshore platforms in California, which relied on trucking crude to refineries onshore. The judge upheld the 2022 decision by the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors to reject Exxon’s trucking plan, stating that while the company has the right to operate the offshore oil platforms, it does not have the right to transport the crude via trucks. The judge supported the board’s decision due to concerns about the safety issues that would arise from using trucks.
Exxon argued that the county supervisors’ opposition to oil production influenced their decision, but the judge dismissed this contention. The company’s three Santa Ynez offshore platforms have been out of operation since 2015 when a pipeline rupture led to a major oil spill. Despite this setback, Exxon’s shares reached a record high on Wednesday as U.S. crude oil prices climbed to their highest level since August of the previous year.