Statement: California first U.S. state to plan to end oil and gas drilling

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As state suffers from impacts of climate change, Gov. Newsom takes important step

Environment California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a directive Friday calling on the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to make a plan to phase out oil and gas drilling no later than 2045 and to ban new permits for fracking by 2024.

In response, Laura Deehan, Environment California State Director, issued the following statement:

“We applaud Governor Newsom for commiting to phase out oil and gas drilling in California. This action is the beginning of the end of fossil fuel’s dominance and the environmental and public health problems that it causes. With the United States suffering droughts, wildfires, sea level rise and air pollution exacerbated by climate change, we must take steps to stave off global warming before things get even worse. We can not continue to put such a heavy burden on our kids, who know they’ll be the ones to suffer the worst impacts. 

“CARB has the power to make sweeping changes under the ‘scoping plan’ which creates the state’s strategy for meeting emissions reductions goals. Ideally, any plan CARB and the state develop will include three facets. First, we should never again hand out new oil and gas permits. Second, we must halt existing fracking operations as permitted by law, especially those within 2,500 feet of homes, schools, vulnerable populations, or surface waters. And third, we must ensure that the oil and gas industry is held fully accountable for capping and cleanup of all wells and for any damage from their operations.

“We look forward to working with CARB on this existentially important project. In many ways in recent decades — from clean car standards to renewable energy — California has set an environmental example for other states. The governor’s announcement today, atop those other achievements, crowns the state’s move away from the dirty technologies of the past. We hope other states will follow this lead as well.”