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Re: Support of Los Angeles City resolution in support of Senate Bill 4 (Pavley): Oil and gas: well stimulation

Dear City Council Members and Mayor Garcetti:

On behalf of our organizations and our thousands of Los Angeles members and supporters, we urge the passage of  Los Angeles City Council’s resolution to support Senate Bill 4 (Pavley).

The fracking industry poses numerous threats to the safety of California’s communities, environment and health. Yet, our state government has allowed the industry to call its own shots and has done little protect the state from potential dangers.

The California Division of Oil Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) is responsible for regulating the oil and gas industry, yet does not require a permit to fracture or inject acid into a well. DOGGR does not ask which chemicals are used in the process, where well stimulation is taking place or how much water is used. With damage running rampant in other states across the country, California should do more to ensure protection of our environment, communities and health.

SB 4 is an important first step in protecting California from the dangers of hydraulic fracturing, acid injection and other risky well stimulation techniques. The bill includes a number of key provisions, including:

• Requiring the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) to affirmatively issue a permit for all well stimulation activities and prohibiting permit issuance where the proposed well stimulation presents an unreasonable risk;
• Requiring disclosure of key information such as the chemicals used, volumes and sources of water and disposition of wastewater;
• Requiring direct prior notice of well stimulation permits to nearby property owners and tenants;
• Requiring baseline and subsequent groundwater monitoring;
• Compelling interagency cooperation; and
• Conducting an independent scientific study on the risks of well stimulation acitivities.
As the largest city in California, and with numerous oil fields within its borders and above the sources of its water, the City of Los Angeles has a particularly high stake in ensuring the safety of the oil and gas industry.

This resolution, calling for the support of SB 4 is a positive step, and our organizations and members thank the City Council for its leadership on the issue.

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