UNOCAL Neches River Facility

State TrusteeFederal TrusteeAO Bureau

Also Known As

None

Incident Type

Oil

State

Texas

Case Status

Closed

Location

not available

Authority

OPA

Contaminants of Concern Include

Oil

Affected DOI Resources Include

Migratory Birds

Case Description

In April 1993, a pipeline malfunctioned, spilling over 88,000 gallons of crude oil into the Neches River near Nederland, Jefferson County, Texas. Wind and tidal currents carried the oil across the river into Grays Bayou, Grays Cut, and Bessie Heights Channel, oiling shorelines and associated marsh areas. Approximately 31 acres were affected, along with habitat for migratory waterfowl, songbirds, marsh and shorebirds, and various species of terrestrial mammals and reptiles. The Trustees determined three acres of wetland marsh restoration would compensate for natural resource injuries from the spill. .In 1997 the Trustees reached settlement for $220,000 to compensate for natural resource damages and administrative costs. The Trustees finalized a restoration plan that would restore 222 acres of intertidal wetlands in the Bessie Heights marsh area, where approximately 5,125 acres of marsh have been lost due to subsidence. The Trustees using restoration dollars, combined with other state funds, applied for and received a $350,000 CWCGP grant, resulting in project funds of $755,000 (which also includes $100,000 from FWS Coastal Ecosystem Program). The restoration project consisted of the construction of a series of terraces where emergent vegetation was planted. The terracing construction approach was effective because the elevation of the submerged substrate was raised to a level that would allow emergent vegetative growth. Terracing also promoted the deposition and retention of suspended sediments, allowing for continued expansion of emergent marshes. The Bessie Heights restoration project has been completed.

Case Documents


 Document TypeDocument NameDocument Date

Factsheet

 Factsheet UNOCAL-Neches River Oil Spill  

Map View

Case Contact

Texas Coastal Ecological Services Field Office

17629 El Camino Real #211, Houston, TX 77058 | (281) 286-8282 | http://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/TexasCoastal/

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