Local activists in California’s Santa Barbara County have placed Measure P on the November ballot to ban “extreme oil extraction” practices such as fracking, acidization, and steam injection over concerns that they make global warming worse, cause earthquakes, pollute aquifers, and waste massive amounts of water at a time when the state is experiencing extreme drought.
The LA Times label for these same practices is a bit less rhetorically provocative: the paper calls them “high intensity petroleum operations.”
But according to Jim Byrne, a spokesman for Santa Barbara County Coalition Against the Oil and Gas Shutdown Initiative, which is running a No On Measure P campaign, both “extreme oil extraction” and “high intensity oil operations” are labels applied by activists seeking to ban practices that have been used in the county “for the past 50 years.”
The real purpose of Measure P? “It’s a shutdown initiative,” Byrne argues.
Byrne is echoing the sentiments of many in the oil industry who argue that Measure P would effectively end all oil operations in Santa Barbara County despite the measure being explicitly worded to allow existing projects to continue operating.
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