Sacramento, CA — The state Assembly has approved a series of rules for California oil and gas producers that engage in the drilling known as fracking. The technique involves pumping water, sand and chemicals into deep rock formations to release oil or natural gas.
Democratic Senator Fran Pavley of Agoura Hills authored the bill which would require drillers to get permits, disclose the chemicals that are used during fracking and notify nearby landowners before they begin work. The bill would also require state environmental officials to complete a study evaluating potential risks. The technique involves injecting water, sand and chemicals into deep rock formations to release oil or natural gas.
Lawmakers in favor of the bill say the growth of fracking means it needs more oversight. Opponents said more regulations would hamper economic development.
The Assembly approved SB4 47-17 today sending it back to the Senate for a final vote.
Some environmental groups say the bill does not go far enough. The Center for Biological Diversity vowed to continue working to halt fracking.
“This bill will not protect Californians from the enormous threats of fracking pollution,” said Kassie Siegel of the Center for Biological Diversity’s Climate Law Institute. “Fracking poses unacceptable risks to the air we breathe, the water we drink and our climate. We’ll keep working to end this inherently dangerous activity in our state.”