Citing climate risks, California is denying fracking permits in droves

SACRAMENTO — Oil companies that blast water and chemicals into the earth to extract fossil fuels are having trouble getting new permits for their California operations even sooner than expected.

Gov. Gavin Newsom pledged the state would stop issuing new permits for fracking by 2024, but California has already begun to ban the controversial oil extraction method in practice by denying permits in droves with little fanfare.

Since July, the state has denied 109 permits to expand fracking. Many were rejected, in part, under a legal rationale the state hasn’t used before: that fracking could exacerbate the effects of climate change. State oil regulators, in their denial letters, argue it’s within their discretion to deny permits to protect the environment and public health, including through the “mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions.”

The rejections are unprecedented and have drawn two lawsuits from opponents who say the Newsom administration has unlawfully imposed a de facto ban on fracking that makes the state more reliant on imported oil.

Read More:Citing climate risks, California is denying fracking permits in droves

2021-11-23 12:03:29

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