“Interim regulations for the controversial oil extraction process known as ‘fracking’ went into effect in California last week. But several public hearings are scheduled across the state this week on permanent regulations.”
From the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA):
“The U.S. Senate on Dec. 17 unanimously agreed to a House bill exempting fire hydrants from regulations designed to reduce the amount of lead in drinking water. The bipartisan bill, entitled the Community Fire Safety Act, HR 5388, passed the House by a vote of 384-0 on Dec. 2 and now awaits President Obama’s signature.
“A coalition of environmental groups and an elderly Monterey County woman filed a lawsuit against state water regulators for failing to protect the public from toxic agricultural discharge.
“The suit, filed on behalf of Antonia Manzo, a Monterey County resident, by Monterey-based The Otter Project and Monterey Coastkeeper and five other organizations, alleges that the state Water Board passed a regulation governing agricultural discharge that is so weak it is in violation of state law.”
From the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):
“The U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have announced an expanded partnership to support water quality trading and other market-based approaches that provide benefits to the environment and economy.
“‘New water quality trading markets hold incredible potential to benefit rural America by providing new income opportunities and enhancing conservation of water and wildlife habitat,’ Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said.
From the Pacifica Tribune, in a commentary by John Blanchard:
“Hydraulic fracturing sounded like a good idea when I first heard of it a couple a years ago. …
“The California Legislature and Governor Brown are still struggling with how to regulate this process that has the potential to contaminate ground water sources and release more CO2 into the atmosphere that previously would have been contained underground.”
“Water users across the state will have reason to listen when Sacramento Superior Court Judge Raymond Cadei issues his statement of decision in the consolidated case California Farm Bureau Federation vs.
From The Salinas Californian, in a commentary by Norm Groot:
“As we close out the year here in the Salinas Valley, you have probably noticed that many of the fields that were once green with vegetables and lettuce are now bare dirt, carefully tilled and furrowed. … So, you wonder, what do farmers do when their fields are not producing products for our hungry nation? …
“There is a lot of regulatory compliance that continues for farming operations.
“Oil companies would need a specific permit to frack a well in California and would have to notify neighbors at least 30 days in advance of the procedure, under regulations proposed Friday by state officials.”