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In an aerial view, a containment boom blocks oil-contaminated water on Oct. 4 in Huntington Beach, California.

Authorities are working to contain one of the largest oil spills in California's recent history that has devastated wildlife and contaminated several popular beaches.

The big picture: The spill was detected Saturday and was estimated to be about 13 square miles in size. Some 126,000 gallons of crude oil has spilled into the waters, per the Coast Guard. The full scope of the environmental impacts remain unknown.

A veterinarian examines a small bird brought to the Huntington Beach Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center on Oct. 4. Photo: Mindy Schauer/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images
People overlook oil collecting against a berm of sand to keep it from flowing from the ocean on Oct. 3 in Newport Beach, California. Photo: David McNew/AFP via Getty Images
A worker cleans up the ecologically sensitive Talbert Marsh as a major oil spill washes ashore in Huntington Beach on Oct. 3. Photo: Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
Heavy machinery builds a sand berm, blocking any more oil coming into the Talbert Channel as a major oil spill washes ashore at Huntington Beach, California, on Oct. 3.
Cleanup workers in protective suits prepare to depart the closed Huntington State Beach as a storm approaches after a 126,000-gallon oil spill from an offshore oil platform on Oct. 4. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images
Workers with Patriot Environmental Services mop up the oil on the water's surface at Talbert Marsh in Huntington Beach, California, on Oct. 4. Photo: Paul Bersebach/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images
A globule of oil lies on the sand at the mouth of the Santa Ana River at Huntington Beach, California, on Oct. 3. Photo: Paul Bersebach/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images

Go deeper: California oil spill may close beaches for months

Go deeper

Department of Interior proposes raising cost of drilling on public lands

A horizontal drilling rig and a pump jack sit on federal land in Lea County, N.M. Photo: Callaghan O'Hare/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Oil and gas companies should pay more to drill on federal lands and waters, the Department of the Interior argued in a report released Friday, saying that the current rates were "outdated."

Driving the news: The Department of Interior report said that the federal government's oil and gas leasing and permitting program "fails to provide a fair return to taxpayers, even before factoring in the resulting climate-related costs that must be borne by taxpayers."

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Nov 29, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Oil-and-gas leasing plan shows climate agenda's limits

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The big policy news over the break was the Interior Department's Black Friday release of its review of oil-and-gas leasing policy.

Catch up fast: The long-awaited document recommends higher royalty rates, bidding costs and rental costs.

City Council member Andre Dickens wins Atlanta mayoral race

Andre Dickens during a rally at Center Stage on November 28, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images)

City Council member Andre Dickens won a runoff election Tuesday to become Atlanta's next mayor, soundly beating the council's president Felicia Moore.

The big picture: Dickens was just a few months ago considered to have an outside chance of replacing Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, who announced in May that she wouldn't seek a second term.