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Environmental Quality Control (EQC)

Gulf Oil Spill – Will Oil Reach South Carolina Coastal Waters?

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced on July 30, 2010 that a new analysis showed that the East Coast is unlikely to experience any effects from the remaining oil on the surface of the gulf as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

In early June, DHEC staff took surf water samples from 10 areas along the state’s coastline to establish a condition baseline for ocean waters. The sampling specifically concentrated on finding evidence of substances that would be an indicator of oil in the water (volatile organics) and polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH’s). All test results were below any known detection levels.

DHEC is the lead state agency for an oil spill of this type off the South Carolina coast. The U.S. Coast Guard is the lead federal agency. We are both part of a larger, well-coordinated plan that will involve many other federal, state and local partners should a response be needed.

DHEC will continue to monitor the response in the Gulf.

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