Tag: well stimulation

Environmental Groups Sue Federal Agencies Again in Unending Legal Battle Over Offshore Oil Development

On November 11, 2016, the Environmental Defense Center (“EDC”) and Santa Barbara Channelkeeper jointly filed suit against several federal agencies including the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (jointly “Agencies”) in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.  The lawsuit alleges violations of the National … Continue Reading

Kern County Acts to Streamline Oil & Gas Permitting

In a process that took nearly three years to complete, on Monday, November 9, the Kern County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a significant change to its oil and gas regulations. The change affects Title 19 of the Kern County Zoning Ordinance and provides a streamline permitting process for oil and gas operations. The change … Continue Reading

Activists ask Court to Scrap EIR and Stop Fracking

Today, July 30, the Center for Biological Diversity (“CBD”) filed a complaint in Sacramento County Superior Court against the Division of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”). CBD claims, among other things, that DOGGR failed to comply with Senate Bill 4 (“SB 4”) by releasing its Final EIR regarding oil and gas well stimulation treatment … Continue Reading

Gov. Brown Assembles Fracking Review Panel

According to several news organizations, Governor Brown has announced plans to form a new panel to review the recent well stimulation study conducted by the California Council on Science and Technology (“CCST”). The study found that while there is little evidence that hydraulic fracturing is directly linked to widespread negative health and environmental impacts, additional data … Continue Reading

Independent Study on California Fracking Released

The California Council on Science & Technology (“CCST”) recently released its Independent Study of well stimulation in California. The report was prepared for the California Natural Resources Agency in response to Senate Bill 4 (“SB 4”). The Study notes the following key points: Hydraulic fracturing in California does not use a lot of fresh water … Continue Reading

Plaintiff Seeks to use Anti-Discrimination Law to Stop Fracking

On July 14, a complaint was filed in Sacramento County Superior Court against Governor Brown and the Division of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) Supervisor Steve Bohlen.  The lawsuit claims Governor Brown and Supervisor Bohlen have adopted regulations that result in racially disparate impacts from well stimulation on minority students. State regulators recently implemented … Continue Reading

Water Board Signs Off on New Fracking Requirements

Yesterday, July 7, the State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) adopted new requirements (“Model Criteria”) for groundwater monitoring in areas where oil and gas stimulation activities occur, such as hydraulic fracturing. The Water Board was required to develop these requirements pursuant to Senate Bill 4 (“SB 4”). The requirements cover a wide range of … Continue Reading

DOGGR Releases Final Well Stimulation EIR

Yesterday, July 1, 2015, pursuant to Senate Bill 4 (“SB 4”) the State Oil & Gas Supervisor Steven Bohlen, head of the Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”), certified a Final Environmental Impact Report (“Final EIR”) for oil and gas well stimulation treatments. As presented in the Final EIR, for the … Continue Reading

State Water Board Receives Groundwater Monitoring Recommendations from Experts

The State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) has recently released recommendations from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (“LLNL”) on Model Criteria for Groundwater Monitoring. Pursuant to Senate Bill 4 (“SB 4”), the Water Board is required to develop regulations for sampling, testing, and monitoring groundwater during hydraulic fracturing operations. The bill requires groundwater monitoring … Continue Reading

Yet Another Lawsuit Seeking to Limit California Oil Development

The clamor over hydraulic fracturing continued Wednesday as environmental activists filed another lawsuit to limit oil and gas development in California.  The lawsuit, filed by Earthjustice on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity and Los Padres ForestWatch, challenges a plan to open portions of federal land in California to oil and gas operations. The … Continue Reading

Industry and Environmental Groups Make Pitch to Water Board Regarding Draft Model Criteria for Groundwater Monitoring

On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, the State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) held a Public Workshop regarding the proposed Draft Model Criteria for Groundwater Monitoring (“Model Criteria”). In this meeting, the Water Board heard comments from stakeholders who voiced their support or concern regarding the Model Criteria. Dr. Steven Bohlen, the State Oil & … Continue Reading

Proposed Assembly Bill 356 Would Require Additional Groundwater Monitoring by Oil & Gas Operators

California Assemblymember Das Williams (D-Carpinteria) has introduced an oil and gas bill to ensure that the state comes into compliance with the Class II underground injection (“UIC”) requirements under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (“SDWA”).  According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“USEPA”), California is currently out of compliance with certain requirements for some Class II … Continue Reading

SB 4 Well Stimulation Treatment Permanent Regulations Finalized

On December 30, 2014, the California Office of Administrative Law (“OAL”) approved the Final Permanent Well Stimulation Treatment Regulations (“Permanent Regulations”).  The regulations go into effect on July 1, 2015, and the Interim Regulations, which were operative all of last year, will remain the governing law in the meantime.  By finalizing the Permanent Regulations, California … Continue Reading

DOGGR to Review Well Stimulation Regulations to Ensure Compliance with Safe Drinking Water Act

On Friday, July 18, 2014, the Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) announced that it will review California’s Underground Injection Control (“UIC”) Program to ensure compliance with the requirements of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (“the Act”).  DOGGR has primary authority under the Act to regulate underground injection wells, … Continue Reading

DOGGR Well Stimulation Regulations Implementation Extended to July 1, 2015

On Friday, June 20, 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed a public resources “trailer bill:”  Senate Bill 681 (“SB 681”).  Section 5 of the Bill extends the implementation deadline for the Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”).  The initial implementation date was set at January 1, 2015.  Under the new law, … Continue Reading

Department of Conservation Issues Revised, Proposed Well Stimulation Treatment Regulations

On June 13, 2014, the Department of Conservation (“Department”)  issued a public notice and posted the latest version of the proposed regulations for the use of well stimulation in oil and gas production (“Revised Proposed Regulations”).  These are revisions to the permanent regulations that will go into effect on January 1, 2015.  The Revised Proposed … Continue Reading

Yet Another Proposed Moratorium on Hydraulic Fracturing Fails: SB 1132 (Oil and gas: well stimulation treatments)

Yesterday, Senate Bill 1132 failed in the Senate.  In a 18-16 vote, SB 1132 fell three votes short of the necessary majority.  The bill was introduced by Senators Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) and Mark Leno on February 20, 2014, as reported here. Through amendments to Public Resources Code (“PRC”) §§ 3157, 3160, 3161, the bill … Continue Reading

Under Scrutiny from All Sides, Brown Taps Ph.D. in Geology to Lead the DOGGR: What This Means for the Industry and SB 4’s Rollout

At last, the new Supervisor of the California Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) has been announced.  Steven Bohlen, currently Program Director at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, will replace recently-retired former Supervisor Tim Kustic.  Mr. Bohlen’s background spans numerous academic, teaching, and research positions, including stints at Texas A&M … Continue Reading

More Well Stimulation Bans in Southern California

The Los Angeles City Council voted to ban well stimulation treatments within city limits by a unanimous vote in February, and is in the process of drafting ordinances to put that decision into effect.  Carson, California has temporarily halted all oil and gas activity (including all new drilling and any well stimulation treatments) in response … Continue Reading

DOGGR Interim Regulations Provide Operators Some Guidance on SB 4 Compliance

California’s Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) is moving full-steam ahead in its implementation of SB 4 with its most recent circulation of the SB 4 Interim Well Stimulation Treatment Regulations (“Interim Regulations”).  Granted emergency regulatory authority in Pub. Res. Code § 3161(b)(6) (also known as SB 4), DOGGR has … Continue Reading

California Department of Conservation Publishes Notice of Proposed Regulations for Well Stimulation

On November 15, 2013, the California Department of Conservation (“DOC”) published the notice of proposed rulemaking action regarding draft regulations for well stimulation.  These proposed regulations will implement SB 4, which Governor Brown on September 20, 2013, and will become effective on January 1, 2014.   The draft regulations supplement the Division of Oil, Gas and … Continue Reading

California Moving Forward with the Implementation of SB 4

Efforts are already underway to implement SB 4, which was signed by Governor Jerry Brown on September 20, 2013 (see September 23, 2013 post).  The California Department of Conservation (the “Department”) and its Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources have begun developing draft regulations months before the law’s effective date of January 1, 2014.  The process of developing … Continue Reading
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