We just noted the California Senate is working on a fracking moratorium, but it’s being reported today that Oil companies and state regulators in California are willing to flout the law and commit fracking without informing the residents. A new California law, SB4, requires that the State notify residents of well stimulation (such as fracking) within 60 days, and therefore frackers must notify the State.
Governor Brown signed the law and it took effect on Jan 1, 2014.
NBC Bay Area is reporting today that an analysis of fracking reporting shows 116 wells were fracked and reported on the industry’s website, FracFocus. The fracking took place in January and February 2014, after the reporting requirement went into effect. Of those, by May 20, 2014, 77 of the fracked wells have not appeared on the website run by California’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR).
Additionally there are 62 wells in the South Coast Air Quality Management District in Southern California (SCAQMD) where hydrochloric acid acidizing has been used (a variant of fracking that uses highly toxic acids). Those wells do not appear on the DOGGR website at all.
Part of the issue is different reporting requirements, apparently. The SCAQMD has rules specific to that region which are different than overall reporting requirements in California. The NBC Bay Area report also quotes state officials claiming the reporting process is complex, and they’re working diligently at it.
But, the requirements under SB4 didn’t appear overnight. Both the state regulators and the industry had lots of time to develop the reporting system. We the people of California need to know what’s going on, and that need is reflected by state law.
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