California-Fracking Ban

Oil pump jacks dot an oil field near Taft. California has denied 21 oil drilling permits in the latest move toward ending fracking in a state that makes millions from the petroleum industry.

SACRAMENTO — California denied 21 oil drilling permits this week in the latest move toward ending fracking in a state that makes millions from the petroleum industry but is seeing widespread drought and more dangerous fire seasons linked to climate change.

State Oil and Gas Supervisor Uduak-Joe Ntuk sent letters Thursday to Aera Energy denying permits to drill using hydraulic fracturing in two Kern County oil fields to “protect “public health and safety and environmental quality, including (the) reduction and mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions.”

Aera Energy, a joint venture Shell and ExxonMobil, called the permit denials “disappointing though not surprising.”

“This is the latest decision attacking the oil and gas industry that is based solely on politics rather than sound data or science,” Aera spokeswoman Cindy Pollard said Friday, adding that the company was evaluating its legal options.

“Banning hydraulic fracturing will only put hard-working people of California out of work and threaten our energy supplies by making the state more dependent on foreign oil,” she said.

Fracking involves injecting high-pressure water deep underground to extract oil or gas from rock. Critics say it can pollute groundwater and contributes to climate change.

“In the face of the effects of the climate emergency, the risks to everyday Californians are too high to approve these permits,” Ntuk said Friday in emails to the Bakersfield Californian and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Gov. Gavin Newsom applauded the move, his office said. In April, Newsom directed the state’s Geologic Energy Management Division, or CalGEM, to develop a plan to stop issuing new fracking permits by 2024 after a measure to ban fracking died in the Legislature.

Newsom also has ordered the California Air Resources Board to figure out how the state can end all oil production by 2045. Those decisions would make California the largest state to ban fracking and likely the first in the world to set a deadline for ending oil production.

(1) comment

Jimzan

When you mention Climate Change ..China spits in our face and laughs at us. And the cowardly media doesn't mention a word about it.

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