Thursday, December 20, 2012

Fracking California!

... The rules proposed by the administration of Gov. Jerry Brown would require energy companies to disclose their fracking plans to the state 10 days before starting operations. The companies also would be required to post to an online database with the locations of their work and the chemicals used, and they would face new rules for testing and monitoring their wells.

Environmental groups immediately blasted the rules as weak and riddled with loopholes.

"These draft regulations would keep California's fracking shrouded in secrecy and do little to contain the many threats posed by fracking," said Kassie Siegel of the Center for Biological Diversity. "The rules are going to have to be completely rewritten if the goal is to provide real protection for our air, water and communities."
Shockingly, for the land of fruit and nuts (with apologies to all my family that live there), these regulations seem relatively sensible, and not terribly onerous.

I wasn't even aware that California had frackable formations, but in retrospect, it makes sense.  There is a lot of oil in California; I recall oil wells all over the Baldwin Hills where we used to hike and collect agates, and even on city streets in Los Angeles in a few places.
Companies in California have used fracking at least since the 1960s. But most of it has been done to produce oil, and largely in Kern County and other Southern California areas. But now the oil industry is looking at a dramatic expansion into the Monterey Shale, a huge geologic formation that extends through much of the Central Valley into San Benito and Monterey counties.

The formation is believed to hold as much as 15.5 billion barrels of recoverable oil, which would make it the nation's largest shale oil formation. Last week, the federal Bureau of Land Management leased 18,000 acres in southern Monterey County for fracking.
Maybe the lure of jobs and industry was even too much for California to screw up.

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