California’s Newsom Moves to Block Oil Drilling Near Homes
(Bloomberg) -- California will move to block oil drilling within about a half-mile of homes, hospitals and schools, a step long sought by environmental-justice advocates in what was once one of the largest crude-producing U.S. states.
Governor Gavin Newsom announced the proposed regulation in the city of Wilmington, one of many Los Angeles-area towns where oil wells abut homes. While other oil-producing states already require residential buffer zones, efforts to create such setbacks in California have repeatedly failed in the face of industry and union opposition.
“We don’t see oil in our future -- we don’t,” Newsom said at a press conference. “A cleaner, brighter, more resilient future is in our grasp.”
The new setback proposal, from California’s oilfield regulating agency, must still survive a process of public comment and economic study before it is formally adopted. It would also tighten air pollution controls on the state’s existing wells that lie within 3,200 feet of homes.
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