Earthjustice Statement on SB-4, California’s Controversial Fracking Bill

State has abdicated responsibility, should expect an uptick in local bans


Kathleen Sutcliffe, Earthjustice, (212) 845-7380

On Friday, California Governor Edmund G. Brown signed SB-4, a controversial bill that fails to protect the public from hydraulic fracturing (or “fracking”) and other extreme methods of oil and gas development.

The following is a statement from Earthjustice attorney George Torgun:

“Earthjustice attorneys have been fighting to protect the public from the impacts of fracking and oil and gas drilling for several years. We’ve seen firsthand that basic environmental protections have been undermined at the federal level, making state level protections all the more important.

“When the states abdicate responsibility—as Governor Brown has done by signing this bill—local communities threatened by the impacts of extreme methods of oil and gas drilling have no choice but to stand up and defend themselves. That’s exactly what happened earlier this month, when the County of Santa Cruz passed a county-wide 45-day moratorium on all fracking, oil and gas exploration and development, following in the footsteps of communities that have passed fracking bans in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Colorado and other states that have abandoned people in the face of this destructive industry.

“Now that this bill is signed into law, the industry should expect to see many more of these bans enacted.”

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