For the first time, California has penalized an oil company over illegal fracking activity after the discovery of a video showing wrongful dumping of the fracking discharge.
A landmark bill regulating hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” is expected to win final approval in the state Senate on Thursday. Governor Jerry Brown says he will sign it into law, but the state’s major environmental groups no longer support the bill.
Oil and gas drillers that use a technique known as fracking would face new rules in California under legislation headed to the governor’s desk.
California regulators are launching an investigation into offshore fracking after revelations that the practice had quietly occurred off the coast since the late 1990s.
Attempts to place a moratorium on the controversial oil drilling technique known as fracking failed as the Legislature hit its first bill-passing deadline, but the industry almost certainly will face stronger regulations when this year’s legislative session is over.
Federal land managers are postponing all oil and gas lease auctions in California until October, citing budget problems and low staffing, and the toll of environmental litigation.
Critics of hydraulic fracturing urged lawmakers Monday to impose a moratorium on the controversial drilling technique, saying there is too much uncertainty about its health and environmental effects.
State lawmakers have introduced at least eight bills that would regulate the practice of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking.”