California Governor Jerry Brown has indicated that he will sign a bill that would regulate hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which passed the Assembly today. The bill is generating fierce debate. Max Pringle reports from Sacramento.
Fracking is when energy companies pump pressurized water and chemicals into oil wells to maximize output. Democratic Assembly member Adam Gray says the measure gives much needed oversight to an under-regulated industry.
"SB4 requires full disclosure about the chemicals used. The source and the amount of water and what happens with the flow back fluids. SB4 requires groundwater monitoring where wells are being stimulated," says Gray.
Support from leading environmental groups had fallen away from the latest version as a moratorium on the practice to allow for further study on its impacts were amended out. The oil industry and other critics have opposed the measure as an unnecessary burden on business operations.