Posts Tagged: fracking
A pumpjack in California's San Joaquin Valley. (Photo: Mark Geistweite, via Shutterstock)
The Trump administration is to opening up 1.2 million acres for oil and gas drilling across California from the Central Valley to the coast, targeting eight counties — Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, San Luis Obisbo, Santa Barbara, Tulare, and Ventura.T he plan follows an earlier move by the federal Bureau of Land Management to issue leases for oil and gas drilling on roughly 800,000 acres in 11 counties.
Pump jacks at sunset, extracting up to 40 liters of oil and water emulsion with each stroke. (Photo: Ronnie Chua, via Shutterstock)
California has long been a top producer of oil. But that may change. Some hope that change will accelerate under Gov. Gavin Newsom, who has called for a decrease in the demand and supply of fossil fuels. A recent massive spill in Chevron’s Cymric oilfield in Kern County, about 35 miles west of Bakersfield, could bolster that view.
The silhouette of a pmpjack at sunset. The jacks can remove five to 40 liters of crude oil wuith each stroke. (Photo: Ronnie Chua, via Shutterstock)
Once again, the stage is being set for a multi-pronged battle in California between environmentalists and the Trump administration. On May 9, the federal government announced plans to open 725,500 acres of public lands on California’s Central Coast and the Bay Area to new oil and gas drilling.
A hazy day in the Los Angeles Basin, New Year's Day, 2015. (Photo:Trekandshoot, via Shutterstock)
OPINION: Gov. Jerry Brown has called Donald Trump’s election the proverbial “heart attack” to get California off of the equivalent of cigarettes — climate-destroying fossil fuels. But for Brown to be the foil to Trump’s anti-environmental policies, it’s going to take a lot more than launching California’s own climate-tracking satellite.
Oil rigs in a Kern County oil field. (Photo: Christopher Halloran)
OPINION: As a father, there is nothing that I wouldn’t do to protect my children. That’s why last year, I filed a suit against the state of California and Governor Brown for discriminating against Latino youth by permitting fracking wells disproportionately close to their schools.
Pumpjacks in a Kern County oil field, November 2013. (Photo: Christopher Halloran)
Oil and gas wells are deeply embedded in many California neighborhoods. Because we have no statewide limits on how close such wells can be to homes or schools, millions of Californians live within breathing distance of these polluting oil operations. That’s a huge concern — especially as hydraulic fracturing and other extreme oil extraction techniques spread across our state.
An oil derrick at work in Kern County, 2013. (Photo: Christopher Halloran)
OPINION: Faced with the decision of whether or not hydraulic fracturing (fracking) should be approved in New York, the state’s Commissioner of Health Dr. Howard Zucker publicly asked, “Would I let my family live in a community with fracking? The answer is no. I therefore cannot recommend anyone else’s family to live in such a community either.” In California, some 5.4 million people (14 percent of the state’s population) live within a mile of at least one of the state’s total of 84,000 oil and gas wells, according to the NRDC.
California’s Capitol is ruled by a handful of powerful special interests, according to more than two-thirds of those surveyed by the Public Policy Institute of California. PPIC’s survey of likely voters also noted that despite a recent string of scandals that have tarnished the Senate, the public’s perception of lawmakers has remained constant.
OPINION: New reports come out every day indicating a strong correlation between fracking and increased toxins in air and water as well as seismic activity. It is becoming clear that extreme well stimulation techniques pose threats to public health that go far beyond those associated with traditional oil and gas drilling.
The San Ardo oil field, Monterey. Photo: Loco Steve, Wikimedia
Fracking is taking place in urban and rural communities throughout the state, and continues to be a regular practice in California’s ocean waters. Concerned about potential impacts, Congresswoman Lois Capps has called for a moratorium on fracking in federal waters until more is understood about the risks of the practice.