Analysis of Oil and Gas Well Stimulation Treatments in California: Draft Environmental Impact Report

California Department of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources

[KCET] A state report released Wednesday says that fracking at three oil fields in Southern California poses significant potential risk to the environment and public health…

The draft report takes a close look at three oil fields in particular: the Sespe Oil Field near Lake Piru in Ventura County, the Wilmington Oil Field in Long Beach, and the Inglewood Oil Field in southwestern Los Angeles. And the report finds that “significant and unavoidable” environmental damage can be expected as a result of fracking at those three oil fields…

In addition to being smack dab in the middle of a landscape crucial to the federal government’s California condor recovery program, Sespe is also surrounded by habitat for imperiled species such as the southern steelhead, arroyo toads, and California red-legged frog.

As a draft Environmental Impact Report prepared under the California Environmental Quality Act, the report released Thursday identifies a range of alternatives for regulating fracking and similar technologies. The report’s authors acknowledge that the first alternative discussed, a total ban on fracking, would be the best path for the Wilmington, Sespe, and Inglewood oil fields.

But while a ban on fracking might be best for the immediate vicinity of the three oil fields studies, the report’s authors claim that a statewide ban would have negative environmental effects by shifting oil and gas production from California to less-well-regulated places…

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