Calif. panel launches probe into offshore fracking

Aug 15, 2013
In this May 1, 2009 file photo, offshore oil drilling platform 'Gail' operated by Venoco, Inc., is shown off the coast of Santa Barbara, Calif. The California Coastal Commission was set to discuss offshore fracking at its meeting on Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013. A recent Associated Press report found that federal regulators approved fracking off the California shoreline on at least a dozen occasions since the late 1900s.(AP Photo/Chris Carlson, File)

California regulators are launching an investigation into offshore fracking after revelations that the practice had quietly occurred off the coast since the late 1990s.

California Coastal Commission staff member Alison Dettmer says the agency has begun looking into the extent of hydraulic fracturing in federal and state waters.

Dettmer says the potential risks are not fully known.

The practice involves pumping large amounts of sea water, sand and chemicals to break up to recover oil and gas.

A recent report by The Associated Press documented at least a dozen instances of in the Santa Barbara Channel, site of a disastrous 1969 blowout that spurred the modern environmental movement.

The coastal panel discussed fracking Thursday during its meeting.

Explore further: Oil companies frack in waters off California

5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Oil companies frack in waters off California

Aug 03, 2013

Companies prospecting for oil off California's coast have used hydraulic fracturing on at least a dozen occasions to force open cracks beneath the seabed, and now regulators are investigating whether the practice should require ...

Germany shelves 'fracking' draft law for now

Jun 04, 2013

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives on Tuesday dropped plans for a draft law on "fracking" for the time being amid concerns by some coalition allies about the oil and gas extraction technique, ...

English tremors blamed on shale 'fracking'

Nov 02, 2011

(AP) -- The only company in Britain using hydraulic fracturing to release natural gas from shale rock said Wednesday that the controversial technique probably did trigger earth tremors in April and May.

Brussels says no plans for EU-wide shale gas ban

Jul 16, 2013

The European Union has no plans to impose a blanket ban on hydraulic fracturing, a controversial shale gas extraction method, but it will lay out rules to address environmental concerns, a top EU official ...

Researcher keeps ear to the ground on impact of fracking

Jul 24, 2013

University of Alberta geophysicist Mirko van der Baan is a great listener. For 15 years, he's been eavesdropping on oil and gas production deep beneath the ground. Now, he's part of a research team working to help industry ...

Study finds fracking chemicals didn't spread

Jul 19, 2013

(AP)—A landmark federal study on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, shows no evidence that chemicals from the natural gas drilling process moved up to contaminate drinking water at a western Pennsylvania drilling site, ...

Recommended for you

US delays decision on Keystone pipeline project

Apr 18, 2014

The United States announced Friday a fresh delay on a final decision regarding a controversial Canada to US oil pipeline, saying more time was needed to carry out a review.

New research on Earth's carbon budget

Apr 18, 2014

(Phys.org) —Results from a research project involving scientists from the Desert Research Institute have generated new findings surrounding some of the unknowns of changes in climate and the degree to which ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Meth mouth menace

Something was up in Idaho. While visiting a friend in Athol, a small town north of Coeur d'Alene, Jennifer Towers, director of research affairs at the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, noticed ...