Jun 27, 2024

California beats Big Oil – again

What you need to know: Implementation of California’s law requiring 3,200-foot setbacks protecting neighborhoods from oil drilling can now begin after the oil industry announced it is dropping its referendum from November’s ballot.

SACRAMENTO  – California notched another victory against Big Oil. The industry announced it is pulling its referendum aimed at repealing California’s law protecting neighborhoods from the dangerous impacts of drilling. 

The measure that would have appeared on this November’s ballot could have allowed the oil industry to keep drilling new wells within 3,200 feet of homes and schools and operating existing wells without critical pollution controls. Now that the industry has pulled their referendum, implementation of California’s law requiring setbacks (SB 1137) can begin – a crucial protection for public health and safety.   

Big Oil saw what they were up against — and they folded, again. No parent in their right mind would vote to allow drilling next to daycares and playgrounds. This victory ends new harmful drilling in our communities and enforces common-sense pollution controls.

This is a huge win for all Californians, especially the more than two million living within a half-mile of these operations.
Governor Gavin Newsom

Recent California victories over Big Oil 

  • Working to end price gouging. Governor Newsom signed a first-in-the-nation law to combat price gouging at the pump last year after calling for a special session of the Legislature to hold Big Oil accountable. The law implemented new accountability measures and created an independent watchdog. 
  • Suing Big Oil for decades of deception. California filed a lawsuit last fall against Big Oil for more than 50 years of deception, cover-up, and damage that have cost taxpayers billions of dollars in health and environmental impacts.
  • Protecting nation-leading vehicle pollution standards. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reaffirmed California’s decades-old authority to set clean vehicle standards. The decision was a victory against Big Oil and red states seeking to overturn California’s authority.