Jan 08 2014

Southern California Fracktivists Confront Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources

A law hailed by California Governor Jerry Brown in 2013 was meant to address public over the controversial practice of “fracking,” or hydraulic fracturing. But SB 4* was a watered down version of what people calling themselves “frack-tivists” want. It requires a minimal level of regulation to be administered by the Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR).

Southern California may become a new epicenter of fracking, as the discovery of a massive trove of oil called the Monterey Shale, has oil and gas developers salivating. There are potentially over 15 billion barrels of oil under vast swathes of the southland but the only way to extract the fossil fuels is through fracking. There are currently several active fracking operations in Los Angeles, Long Beach, Carson, Culver City, Baldwin Hills, Brea, Huntington Beach, and Seal Beach, which residents and activists say are contaminating their water and air.

DOGGR held a public hearing this Monday at Cal State Long Beach – one of 7 such hearings across California – and dozens of fracktivists showed up to rally before the hearing, denouncing the state agency, SB 6, and Governor Jerry Brown. They want fracking to be banned altogether.

Uprising correspondent Bradford Betz was at the rally and files this special report.

ERRATUM: We mistakenly announced California’s Fracking regulation bill as SB 6 instead of SB 4. Uprising staff regrets the error.

3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Southern California Fracktivists Confront Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources”

  1. Daniel Ferraon 09 Jan 2014 at 12:38 am

    The U.S. is spending a water budget without understanding how much water is available or what the use of water in energy production will mean for local communities, agriculture, or other commercial uses.” Americas Clean Energy Agenda.

    The Southwest is in the midst of a record drought, some 14 years in the making, which means the water supply for many Western states – California, Arizona, Utah, Nevada – is drying up. Last month the Bureau of Reclamation announced they’re cutting the flow of water into Lake Mead, which has already lost 100 feet of water since the drought began.

    What happens if the Southwest drought does not end soon?

    Will we keep using 3 to 6 million gallons of Clean Water per Fracked well, to extract natural gas?

    The State of California has mandated that 33% of its Energy come from Renewable Energy by 2020.

    The state currently produces about 71% of the electricity it consumes, while it imports 8% from the Pacific Northwest and 21% from the Southwest.

    This is how we generate our electricity in 2011, natural gas was burned to make 45.3% of electrical power generated in-state. Nuclear power from Diablo Canyon in San Luis Obispo County accounted for 9.15%, large hydropower 18.3%, Renewable 16.6% and coal 1.6%.

    There is 9% missing from San Onofre and with the current South Western drought, how long before the 18.3% hydro will be effected?

    Another generator of power that jumps out is natural gas, 45.3%, that is a lot of Fracked Wells poisoning our ground water, 3 to 6 million gallons of water are used per well. If Fracking is safe why did Vice Pres Cheney lobby and win Executive, Congressional, and Judicial exemptions from:

    Clean Water Act.

    Safe Drinking Water.

    Act Clean Air Act.

    Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.

    Emergency Planning Community Right to Know Act.

    National Environmental Policy Act.

    “Americans should not have to accept unsafe drinking water just because natural gas is cheaper than Coal. the Industry has used its political power to escape accountability, leaving the American people unprotected, and no Industry can claim to be part of the solution if it supports exemptions from the basic Laws designed to ensure that we have Clean Water and Clean Air” Natural Resources Defense Council.

    We have to change how we generate our electricity, with are current drought conditions and using our pure clean water for Fracking, there has to be a better way to generate electricity, and there is, a proven stimulating policy.

    The Feed in Tariff is a policy mechanism designed to accelerate investment in Renewable Energy, the California FiT allows eligible customers generators to enter into 10- 15- 20- year contracts with their utility company to sell the electricity produced by renewable energy, and guarantees that anyone who generates electricity from R E source, whether Homeowner, small business, or large utility, is able to sell that electricity. It is mandated by the State to produce 33% R E by 2020.

    FIT policies can be implemented to support all renewable technologies including:
    Wind
    Photovoltaics (PV)
    Solar thermal
    Geothermal
    Biogas
    Biomass
    Fuel cells
    Tidal and wave power.

    There is currently 3 utilities using a Commercial Feed in Tariff in California Counties, Los Angeles, Palo Alto, and Sacramento, are paying their businesses 17 cents per kilowatt hour for the Renewable Energy they generate. We can get our Law makers and Regulators to implement a Residential Feed in Tariff, to help us weather Global Warming, insulate our communities from grid failures, generate a fair revenue stream for the Homeowners and protect our Water.

    Why it is better to own your own Renewable Energy System.

    “The benefits of owning a renewable energy system far outweigh the benefits of a lease or a power purchase agreement (PPA). Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, homeowners are eligible for a federal personal income tax credit up to 30% of the purchase cost of their renewable energy system, without a maximum limit.** Homeowners can utilize the incentive money in any way they choose. But homeowners that choose to lease their systems turn over their rebates and incentives to the third party lease or PPA companies associated with the solar systems installed on their homes.”

    “The owner of a renewable energy system is also sheltered from rising electricity costs, which have historically increased on average of 3-5% each year. This presents homeowners with opportunities to save money each month on energy and also reduces their reliance on third-party utility companies. By purchasing a renewable energy system with cash or through a loan, a homeowner can completely pay off his or her system and then independently produce clean energy.

    By choosing a lease or a PPA option homeowners are essentially substituting their utility companies with third-party leasing companies. Additionally, homeowners will likely be required to purchase their systems, renew their leases, or have the systems removed from their roof and revert to paying utility rates once their leases have ended.” Charlie Angione.

    “There’s absolutely no such thing as a $0 down solar lease or PPA and here’s why. A requirement of both of these financing programs is that you agree upfront to give the leasing or PPA company your 30% federal tax credit which is worth thousands of dollars as well as any other financial incentives.

    At $5.57 per Watt. a 6 kW solar system would yield a federal tax credit of $10,026!

    With a $0 down loan instead of a lease, you’ll get to keep the 30% federal tax credit as well as all other applicable financial incentives for yourself and you’ll own your solar system instead of renting it, for a much greater return on investment.

    And if you do decide to lease instead of own, good luck ever selling your home with a lease attached to it. What homebuyer will want to purchase your home and assume your remaining lease payments on a used solar system on your roof, when they can buy and own a brand new system for thousands less.” Ray Boggs.

    We also need to change a current law, California law does not allow Homeowners to oversize their Renewable Energy systems.

    Campaign to allow Californian residents to sell electricity obtained by renewable energy for a fair pro-business market price. Will you read, sign, and share this petition?

    http://signon.org/sign/let-california-home-owners

  2. GraceTiessenon 13 Jan 2014 at 9:06 am

    California is short on water. We cannot risk polluting the little we have

    Think of the 300,000 people back Est whose water supply has been polluted. What are they going to do?

    BE CAREFUL that you do not have that problem

  3. Jane Elsdonon 13 Jan 2014 at 11:15 pm

    Drought sucked-dry California is the last place in the country where fracking should be allowed. Let’s get linear, logical, and
    practical here. We need clean water far more than plundered profit.

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