For Immediate Release, July 14, 2015
Long Beach Protest Targets First Offshore Fracking in California Waters Since 2013
Today's Rally to Oppose Nine Offshore Fracks Approved After Refugio Oil Spill
LONG BEACH, Calif.— Activists in hazmat suits will protest today outside a Long Beach city council meeting against plans for nine new offshore fracks in Long Beach Harbor. The demonstration begins at 4 p.m. today outside Long Beach City Hall, 333 W. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach.
The protest, organized by the Center for Biological Diversity, Stop Fracking Long Beach and South Bay 350, will urge city council members to halt plans for nine new fracks near Long Beach. The new offshore fracks, which would begin in August and continue through December, would be the first in state waters since 2013.
State officials approved the new fracks just weeks after the devastating Refugio oil spill near Santa Barbara. Because the city of Long Beach owns the land and directs the drilling operations in Long Beach Harbor, demonstrators are asking the city council to halt plans for offshore fracking.
“Every offshore frack increases the risk of another devastating oil spill on California’s beautiful coast,” said Ash Lauth of the Center. “The Long Beach City Council has the power and the responsibility to stop this dangerous plan for new offshore fracking in its tracks.”
Offshore fracking blasts vast volumes of water mixed with toxic chemicals beneath the seafloor at pressures high enough to fracture rocks. The high pressures used in offshore fracking increase the risk of well failure and oil spills.
At least 10 fracking chemicals routinely used in offshore fracking in California could kill or harm a broad variety of marine species, including sea otters and fish, Center scientists have found.
A recent California Council on Science and Technology report found that there is inadequate information about more than half the chemicals used in fracking, including toxicity and risks to the environment and public health.
The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 900,000 members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.