VIDEO – The Hidden Oil Rigs of L.A.

Anyone who has driven by down La Cienega to the airport or through Long Beach has found the loca oil derricks hard to miss. Many people know about the rigs hidden between the kidney shaped buildings at Beverly Center and that the site of the Farmers Market/Grove Shopping Center was where Earl Gilmore once struck oil, but most don’t realize that black gold is actually being pumped from the ground below your feet every day. The video below really shows and explains that process.

Exploration #4 – Oil of L.A. – Twenty billion barrels of oil sit beneath Los Angeles. Hidden in plain sight, thousands of wells pump day and night all over the city covered by hollow office buildings, camouflaged next to high schools, and concealed behind shopping malls. We put on our boots and went exploring.

This great video was filmed as part of “Uneven Terrain,” a series “devoted to urban exploration and uncovering the hidden, underground and forgotten corners of the world’s leading metropolises.” The second episode was about pirate radio in London.

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2 Responses to “VIDEO – The Hidden Oil Rigs of L.A.”

  1. Aaron T says:

    This video looks very similar to an exhibit at the Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI) on Venice Blvd last fall titled URBAN CRUDE: THE OIL FIELDS OF THE LOS ANGELES BASIN. Website is:

    I hate to see someone’s hard work get used without any credit.

  2. Name (required) says:

    It’s covered in the video, but it’s worth repeating: if you own property near one of these rigs, chances are it is pumping oil from under your house. You are entitled to royalties from the mineral rights to your oil.

    There are also fake islands in Long Beach which pump oil.

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