Two Santa Barbara environmental groups have filed a lawsuit against the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) attempting to block the agency from issuing new permits for offshore fracking in Southern California and the Santa Barbara Channel.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If your home or community was affected by air or water contamination caused by fracking, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and our lawyers can help.
What’s the problem?
November 17, 2016 – According to the lawsuit, an environmental analysis by the BSEE concluded falsely that hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” poses no significant impact to the environment in terms of air quality, water quality, or endangered species. The complaint was filed by the Environmental Defense Center (EDC) and Santa Barbara Channelkeeper, alleging the analysis fails to meet minimum federal standards.
Linda Krop, chief counsel of the EDC, gave the analysis “a 10” for inadequacy, arguing that BSEE reached the “no impact” conclusion based on the assumption that there would be minimal fracking or acidification taking place off the Santa Barbara coast. In prior lawsuits involving the same issue, both ExxonMobil and the American Petroleum Institute argued as intervenors that these processes could generate significant quantities of oil and gas. Furthermore, Krop maintained that the Department of Interior never consulted with agencies charged with protecting the dozens of local endangered species that could potentially be affected.
Krop said the federal government denied for years that there were any fracking activities in waters off the California coast, when it was subsequently revealed through the Freedom of Information Act that it had been going on since the 1980s. Federal oversight agencies refused to require any environmental oversight before issuing fracking permits until a lawsuit was filed in 2014.
The suit was ultimately settled after the government agreed to conduct a uniform environmental analysis that could be applied to requests for coastal fracking and acidification. That analysis was completed in May and is the focus of the new litigation.
Krop said most of the fracking is currently taking place off the coast of Santa Barbara and San Pedro, and that at least two permits have been issued since completion of the environmental analysis. If the lawsuit is successful, it would stop new permits until further environmental analysis can be completed.
Do I Have a Fracking Lawsuit?
The Class Action Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in fracking lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new air and water contamination cases in all 50 states.
Free Case Evaluation: Again, if you feel you were harmed by the fracking process, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.