California governor strengthens fossil fuel fight

While fracking has not been banned in the state, regulations and restrictions have been imposed.

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In a victory for those who oppose California’s oil drilling industry, Gov. Gavin Newsom has imposed strict oil drilling regulations on his state. 

Newsom put a halt on hundreds of hydraulic fracturing permits until these projects can be reviewed by independent scientists who can assess and approve how safe this method is. According to EcoWatch, his mandate also banned new wells from being drilled using a new method that employs a high-pressure cyclic steaming process. Regulators believe that process led to an oil leak that spilled 1.3 million gallons of oil and water in California’s Central Valley this summer. 

“These are necessary steps to strengthen oversight of oil and gas extraction as we phase out our dependence on fossil fuels and focus on clean energy sources. This transition cannot happen overnight; it must advance in a deliberate way to protect people, our environment, and our economy,” states the Governor. 

He also made the move to prohibit all oil and gas activities near homes, school, hospitals, and parks. 

Since July, 263 applications remain pending approval for new oil permits, which was also the time of the Kern County oil spills happening from Chevron-owned wells. 

While some are surprised as to how much fracking occurs in the state of California, The Washington Post reports that California actually ranks seventh in terms of state oil output, just behind Alaska. Yet California is usually noted more for its thirst for the stuff, with its legions of drivers consuming more gasoline than in any other state. In terms of production, you’re more likely to associate California with barrels of Cabernet than crude.

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