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Ban oil and gas drilling within Los Angeles city limits

An oil pumpjack in action at the Inglewood oil field in Los Angeles, California on January 28, 2022.

Mario Tama | Getty Images

The Los Angeles City Council has decided to ban new oil and gas drilling and phase out existing wells over the next 20 years. This is a historic decision. After years of complaints by residents about how pollution from nearby drilling is causing health problems.

Council on Friday, by 12-0 vote approved the ordinance Earlier this year, it began drafting a draft that would immediately ban new mining and shut down existing operations within 20 years. The decision to ban new drilling and decommission existing wells is one of the strongest environmental policies enacted in the state and could pave the way for other cities across the country to adopt similar measures. I have.

Historically, environmental law originated in California widely spread It applies to other parts of the country, such as the 1970s automobile cleaner emission standards. More recently, states have banned the sale of. new petrol car by 2035, and new york state followed immediately.

LA has 26 oil and gas fields and over 5,000 operating and idle fields. Wells are located throughout the city, including Wilmington, Harbor Gateway, Downtown, West LA, South LA, and the northwestern San Fernando Valley.

The oil industry has largely opposed the city’s ban, arguing that phasing out production would make LA more dependent on foreign energy.

Hector Barajas, spokesman for the California Independent Petroleum Institute, which represents independent oil and gas producers in the state, said the 2.5 million barrels of oil the city produced last year were replaced by imports from Saudi Arabia, Ecuador and Iraq. said it must. New state ban. The United States currently produces more than 12 million barrels per day, according to. U.S. Energy Information Administration.

“In-state oil is the only California climate-compliant oil in the world because oil producers must comply with the state’s greenhouse gas reduction program and account for all emissions,” Barajas said. I was. “Oil imports from foreign countries are completely exempt from these requirements.”

The council said it would ensure oil companies take responsibility for properly plugging in and completing comprehensive site remediation within three to five years of production site closures.

The city is also conducting research to determine when Los Angeles oil companies will be able to recoup their capital investments in drilling operations. If the operator can recoup these investments before his 20-year timeline, the city could require those companies to stop production even sooner.

More than 500,000 people in LA live within 400 meters of active wells that emit harmful air pollutants such as benzene, hydrogen sulfide, particulate matter and formaldehyde. Almost a third of the city’s wells are located outside of drill sites between parks, schools and homes, and communities of color are disproportionately affected by the health impacts of these sites.

People living near excavations are at greater risk premature birthasthma, respiratory disease And cancer, studies show. Living near drilling is also associated with poor lung function and wheezing, according to a study published in the journal. Environmental research.

Stand Together Against Neighborhood Drilling, or Stand LA, a coalition of environmental justice groups, said in a statement that the decision “represents blacks, Latinos, and others who currently live near the polluted oil wells and derricks in South LA and Wilmington.” communities of color can finally breathe easier.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2022/12/05/los-angeles-bans-oil-and-gas-drilling-within-city-limits.html Ban oil and gas drilling within Los Angeles city limits

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