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Featured, Energy Matters Mar 11, 2021

Senate Bill 467: Bans are not solutions

Why this proposed legislation would be detrimental, not just to the state’s oil and gas industry but the well-being of Californians and our future

As WSPA’s president and CEO, Catherine Reheis-Boyd oversees the trade organization’s operations and advocacy in five states. Follow her on Twitter @WSPAprez.

As WSPA’s president and CEO, Catherine Reheis-Boyd oversees the trade organization’s operations and advocacy in five states. Follow her on Twitter @WSPAprez.

By Catherine Reheis-Boyd, Western States Petroleum Association

There could not be a better example of the disconnect that exists between the policymakers in Sacramento and the everyday Californians who do the real work to move our state forward than Senate Bill 467 by Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco).

SB 467 will halt the issuance or renewal of permits for hydraulic fracturing, acid well stimulation treatments, cyclic steaming, and water and steam flooding starting in 2022 and then completely by 2027. This bill will also include a 2,500-foot setback of oil and gas wells, similar to what was defeated last year on AB 345.

Our state is in the midst of tremendous job loss and an economic disaster due to COVID. We cannot get businesses open and people back to work or even figure out how to pay unemployment benefits to millions. Yet, these lawmakers are focused on eliminating our ability to provide safe, affordable and reliable energy for families and businesses under environmental standards that are already the toughest in the world.

SB 467 is so broad that the results of its passage would lead to a total production ban on oil and gas production in California. That means hundreds of thousands of more Californians without jobs, the state facing billions in takings claims and our people being completely reliant on petroleum produced in other parts of the world.

Working together for a sustainable energy future

California has an abundant, local supply of oil and natural gas. There is a false belief that a sustainable energy future can be achieved without oil and gas, which the federal government estimates will continue to make up about 80% of the energy mix through 2040.

All Californians should expect to have good healthcare, high quality education, a path to the middle class and access to safe, affordable and reliable energy. We must all work together to chart an intentional future, not an accidental one.

There is a path to a truly sustainable future – but not without oil and gas.

Achieving a truly sustainable energy future will require all parties working together to find innovative solutions. Bans do not represent a collaborative approach to providing safe, affordable and reliable energy for everyone, everywhere, all the time.

WSPA is in strong opposition to any line of thinking that is not inclusive. Tomorrow’s energy mix needs to work for all Californians. Our state’s abundant supply of oil and natural gas will continue to be a critical component to meeting our energy needs for decades to come, even as we make the shifts the energy transition demands.

There is a path to a truly sustainable future – but not without oil and gas. Now is the time for inclusive innovation: working together to find common ground and investing in a better future.

When we look past political rhetoric and polarizing talking points and look to the facts, it is clear the last thing we can afford to do is shut down oil and gas production. It is detrimental to the well-being of our people, our economic recovery and attaining the truly sustainable energy future that all of us want. If not us, then who?

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