Carson City, CA declares State of Emergency due to toxic soil from spill - demands Shell to clean up
The City of Carson declaring a local emergency, a resolution City Council says is aimed at forcing Shell into action. It"s turned into an all out fight between a small city and a huge world wide oil company.
A Venoco platform off the coast of Santa Barbara.
An investigation by TruthOut - an online news source - has uncovered information using a Freedom of Information Act request. They have learned that fracking was approved by federal regulators in the waters off the Santa Barbara coast without environmental review that some say is required by federal law. More fracking is possible.
A Truthout investigation has confirmed that federal regulators approved at least two hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," operations on oil rigs in the Santa Barbara Channel off the coast of California since 2009 without an updated environmental review that critics say may be required by federal law.
BREAKING: Study of 100 wells by University of Texas reveals elevated levels of contaminates in wells that are close to drilling activity. ""The peer-reviewed paper focuses on the presence of metals such as arsenic, barium, selenium and strontium in water samples. Many of these heavy metals occur naturally at low levels in groundwater, but disturbances from natural gas extraction activities could cause them to occur at elevated levels...Researchers believe the increased presence of metals could be due to a variety of factors including: industrial accidents such as faulty gas well casings; mechanical vibrations from natural gas drilling activity disturbing particles in neglected water well equipment; or the lowering of water tables through drought or the removal of water used for the hydraulic fracturing process. Any of these scenarios could release dangerous compounds into shallow groundwater. For news release click here.
Today, the Center for Biological Diversity in a coalition of other conservation groups filed suit against the federal Bureau of Land Management because, they say, the BLM has allowed 800,000 acres to be made available for oil and gas drilling without proper consideration given to endangered species.
“The BLM should be managing these wild areas for the rich wildlife diversity and recreational opportunities they provide,” said Dan Chu, director of the Sierra Club's Our Wild America campaign, “not for dirty fuels development on a giant scale.”
Recently in Ventura County, the Board of Supervisors approved a plan for new wells on an old conditional use permit that was issued about 30 years ago that never considered, examined or otherwise revealed that any data was collected regarding the impact of drilling on the endangered California Condor.
Earlier this year the Center for Biological Diversity filed a law suit against the California Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources alleging that DOGGR "has unlawfully failed to assess the alleged environmental hazards associated with an oil and gas production stimulation technique known as hydraulic fracturing."
And this year the BLM decided to halt lease sales for drilling on federal land throughout California following a federal court ruling that the BLM had violated the law in selling leases without proper environmental review taking place.
It would seem that again and again, the oil and gas industry, and State regulatory bodies move too quickly to line up drilling rights through leases, without proper environmental review as required by law. What kind of confidence does the public have in the industry and our local regulators if law suits are the only recourse to force environmental review?
“This citizen intervention is necessary because the Department of Interior is sending mixed messages to the public. On one day, the administration issues a statement that the Colorado River's critical water supply will be protected for people and habitat, and then on another day they announce the most carbon intensive mining practice on the planet can move forward,” said John Weisheit, conservation director with Living Rivers. “The two programs are not mutually beneficial. Interior has to protect the Colorado River, there is no other choice.”
The Wilderness Society says parts of the Los Padres National Forest is too wild to drill. How will the government and industry respond? They say that drilling should only be done in parts of the forest where there is already an impact from drilling - like the Sespe Wilderness in Ventura County. What do you think? Should more drilling happen in the Sespe in order to protect the untouched parts of Los Padres? Or should new drilling on national forest lands be banned altogether? Or should the industry be allowed to proceed as they have for decades, obtaining leases, and permits to drill wells as they explore for oil and gas that has been untapped to fulfill our ever increasing energy demands?
Los Padres National Forest is one of the top places in America considered "too wild to drill,"according to a new report from The Wilderness Society. It highlights a dozen of the nation's most unique landscapes that it says are threatened by oil and gas drilling.
Today, KQED's radio show "Forum with Michael Krasny" aired an excellent discussion and analysis of Obama's recent climate speech. Discussing energy issues including nuclear, coal, gas, fracking, subsidies and more. Representing the many viewpoints of the issue. I highly recommend taking a listen. The Audio is not up online yet (the show just ended) but I expect it will be up shortly at this link: http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201307020900