About the Cover – August 2013
California, Orange County and especially Huntington Beach has a 100 year history stepped in of all things, oil.
The city was incorporated on 1909. Its original developer was the Huntington Beach Company (formerly the West Coast Land and Water Company), a real-estate development firm owned by Henry Huntington the city’s namesake. The Huntington Beach Company is still a major land-owner in the city, and still owns most of the local mineral rights. The first well (H A#1) was drilled in 1920.
By 1923, there were 156 separate wells producing 119,000 barrels of oil per day, 34-mil. barrels and 41-mil. cubic feet of gas a year, generating approx. $50-mil. in revenue for the oil businesses here. The number of wells peaked in 1956 at 1,799, producing 22-mil. barrels that year.
Today many coastal city councils are agreeing to studies and proposals to drill oil wells that would access the mostly off-shore Torrance Oil Field.
The proposals are for slant drilling projects that would be built underground going out into the bay, meaning rigs would not be seen in the water like those in Huntington Beach or Santa Barbara.