New documentary about the Santa Barbara Oil Pipeline Spill of 2015.

On May 19, 2015, Plains All-American Pipeline’s onshore pipeline ruptured spilling 140,000 US gallons onto the Gaviota coastline. Oil flowed through a culvert and into the Pacific fouling beaches from Santa Barbara to Los Angeles. Gail Osherenko’s “Broke” follows the story of the spill, the clean up, and the active community responses.

Winner: Humanitarian Award / IndieFest

Winner: Best Documentary Feature Film / San Luis Obispo International Film Festival

“Broke” highlights the reaction of citizens who came together in protest marches and healing ceremonies, rescued birds and marine mammals, cleaned the oil off  beaches, and demanded more stringent spill prevention and response. The community’s actions stand in stark contrast to the insensitivity of the oil industry and particularly Plains All-American Pipeline, Ltd.  Plains still faces both criminal and civil lawsuits.

Filmmaker statement:

We started filming at Refugio State Park the afternoon that Plains All-American Pipeline, line 901, burst on May 19, 2015 spilling 140,000 gallons of crude oil onto the Gaviota coast and into the ocean. Crude oil tumbled in the surf, sent toxic fumes in the air, and killed sea life as the Coast Guard struggled to respond.

It’s a one-hour environmental story with a peek back at the Santa Barbara oil spill of 1969 that helped launch the environmental movement, EPA, and clean air and water laws, and a look forward to a fossil free future.

Featured in the film in alphabetical order are:

  • Yvonne Addassi, Deputy Administrator, CA Department of Fish & Wildlife
  • Heather Armentrout, Animal Care Specialist, Oiled Wildlife Care Network
  • Owen Bailey, Executive Director, Environmental Defense Center, Santa Barbara
  • Margaret Connell, former Mayor of Goleta, CA
  • Chris Corbo, Deputy Incident Commander, CA Dept. Fish & Wildlife
  • Salud Carbajal, Congressman from California Central Coast (former County Supervisor)
  • Jaime Diamond, Stardust Sportfishing
  • Lauren DuBois, Liaison, SeaWorld San Diego
  • Becky Elias, Volunteer Coordinator, Oiled Wildlife Care Network
  • Steve Ferry, former Co-President, Santa Barbara Audubon
  • Christina Fiorello, Veterinarian, Oiled Wildlife Care Network, University of California, Davis
  • Carla Frisk, Board Member, Get Oil Out
  • Walter Fuller, Steward of Ormond Beach, Oxnard, CA
  • Hanna-Beth Jackson, California State Senator, Santa Barbara and Ventura
  • Cynthia Hartley, Western Snowy Plover Beach Monitor, Ormond Beach
  • Wes Herman, Retired Fire Captain and Petroleum Engineer, County of Santa Barbara
  • Patrick Hodgins, Senior Safety Director, Plains All-American Pipeline Co.
  • Eric Kjellstrom, California Fish & Wildlife
  • John Kovach, Volunteer Snowy Plover Docent, Coal Oil Point Reserve
  • Linda Krop, Chief Counsel, Environmental Defense Center, Santa Barbara
  • Richard Kuprewicz, President, Accufacts, Inc., pipeline safety expert
  • Eric Laughlin, Public Information Officer, California Department of Fish & Wildlife
  • Kathryn Lehr, Planner, Santa Barbara County Energy Division
  • Harry Liquornik, urchin fisherman
  • Craig and Cindy Makela, olive ranchers, Gaviota Coast
  • Phil McKenna, President, Gaviota Coast Conservancy
  • Riki Ott, PhD marine toxicology, Author “Not One Drop” and “Sound Truth & Corporate Myth$”
  • Chris Peltonen, Project Manager, VENOCO
  • Matt Renner, Executive Director, World Business Academy
  • Helene Schneider, Mayor of Santa Barbara

2017 / 55 minutes / Color / A film by Gail Osherenko


Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to or simply choose from the options below:

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Watch the trailer