"Fracking," or hydraulic fracturing, is a dangerous drilling technique that endangers sources of drinking water, air quality, wildlife and public health. Yet state regulators in California don't currently even track when and where it is occuring, much less protect us from its many dangers.
Fracking is associated with more than 1,000 documented cases of water contamination across the country. As public concern has grown, California officials have issued draft regulations to govern fracking. However, the state's proposed regulations would keep fracking in California shrouded in secrecyand do almost nothing to protect our air, water or climate.
The best way to protect California is to ban fracking now.
Right now your input is absolutely vital -- please speak out now by urging the California Department of Conservation, which is charged with overseeing oil and gas drilling in California, to impose a ban on fracking in California, before irrevocable damage is done to our state.
Dear Director Nechodom:
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the draft regulations for fracking in California. Fracking is a dangerous method of oil and gas extraction that has been associated with more than 1,000 instances of water contamination around the country. We have the opportunity to avoid the environmental damage that fracking for oil and gas has caused in other states, but the state's proposed regulations would not do so. In order to protect California from this dangerous practice, I ask that you replace the draft regulations with an immediate ban on fracking.
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The department's proposed regulations provide little or no protection for our air, water, and climate. They do nothing to protect people living near fracked wells from air pollutants that cause cancer and respiratory illness. They do not protect residents from exposure to, or contamination by, the large volume of toxic wastewater fracking produces, including spills into rivers and streams. In addition, fracking undermines our state's greenhouse gas reduction goals both through the release of methane during drilling and from the combustion of the fossil fuels produced.
Fracking also threatens our wildlife. Endangered species like the California condor, San Joaquin kit fox and blunt-nosed leopard lizard that live in places where fracking will likely proliferate. These animals can be harmed in many ways by fracking and the industrial development it creates.
Other states are becoming increasingly concerned about the risks posed by fracking. New York, New Jersey and Vermont have enacted bans or moratoriums. California should follow their lead and ban fracking to assure the protection of our environment and health.