News Release

California Frackin’

Review of Offshore Fracking-Penn Energy

JOSH FOX, via Steve Kent, skent[at]kentcom.com, @joshfoxfilm
Fox is an Oscar-nominated filmmaker whose film “GASLAND” helped spark the anti-fracking movement. The final film in his GASLAND trilogy, “How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change,” opens in theaters in the Los Angeles area June 3-6, and airs nationally on HBO June 27.

Fox is criticizing the Obama administration’s new move to quietly approve offshore fracking in the Pacific Ocean by releasing an obscure federal study claiming that fracking off California’s coast is safe. A Sanders supporter, he’ll speak about this at a June 4 mega-rally for Bernie Sanders in the Los Angeles Coliseum. This week, Sanders called the federal decision to greenlight offshore fracking “disastrous.” Fox stresses that Sanders wants to ban fracking onshore and offshore and start scaling up renewables now.

Fox contrasts Sanders’ position with Hillary Clinton’s support of fracking as a “bridge fuel,” her close ties to the fossil fuel industry, and her work promoting fracking abroad as Secretary of State through the Global Shale Gas Initiative. Fox has been on record about that recently in the Washington Post and other outlets.

He said today: “The Obama administration has opened up the Pacific Ocean to offshore fracking. I wish that were an Onion headline, but it’s not. Climate change is already killing our oceans. Scientists are saying half the Northern Great Barrier Reef has died because of bleaching. And now the administration has OK’d fracking the Pacific off California’s coast, using a process known to cause water contamination, in order to extract more fossil fuels — fossil fuels that we know we can’t burn.

ALEXANDRA NAGY, anagy[at]fwwatch.org, @realfoodnagy
Nagy is the Southern California organizer at the Los Angeles branch of Food & Water Watch. She works within the Los Angeles and greater Southern California region to advocate for consumer health issues, including food safety, the human right to water, and a statewide ban on fracking.

She said today: “Last Friday, the Obama administration released two reports that would allow renewed offshore fracking in California after the Center for Biological Diversity filed suit for lack of environmental review. The two reports claimed that offshore fracking poses no significant environmental impact, despite new peer-reviewed science that demonstrates that fracking chemicals, and the oil and gas they release, pose significant risks to public health and the environment. The reports come one year after the Santa Barbara oil spill in which more than 100,000 gallons of crude bled into the ocean. The spill was but one shocking example of how offshore fracking increases the risk of exposure to chemicals and toxins that come with fossil fuel extraction.

“Reinstating offshore fracking would allow companies to dump to 9 billion gallons of oil wastewater mixed with fracking chemicals each year into the Santa Barbara Channel, creating unsafe conditions for marine life and people. This may also pave the way for more offshore fracking in Long Beach, Huntington Beach and Seal Beach.

“The people in California want policy that puts people’s lives and wellbeing before Big Oil profits. We know we need to keep fossil fuels in the ground and move to 100 percent renewable energy to protect our communities and the planet. Sadly, the Obama administration leaves an environmental legacy that sacrifices the health of the many for the greed of the few.

“We need leaders who champion real protections for our communities and the environment from toxic pollution, who take a stand against the fossil fuel industry and ban offshore fracking.”