SoCalGas Begins Drilling In Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve In Los Angeles Putting Wildlife At Risk

SoCalGas has begun drilling in the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve without proper approval from federal, state, and county agencies. SoCalGas’ end-run around the environmental review process threatens endangered and imperiled wildlife who live in one of the last wetlands in Los Angeles.

Despite growing public opposition to a fake “restoration” plan that would devastate these unique and precious wetlands, and requests for formal environmental reviews, local residents recently noticed workers digging and drilling inside the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve, just feet away from endangered Belding’s Savannah sparrows and Egrets. SoCalGas even called the police to intimidate Los Angeles City Council candidate Molly Basler who was documenting new unapproved work at the facility.

The supposed restoration plan is nothing more than a deceitful attempt to fix deteriorating gas wells and pipes that run underneath Ballona Wetlands.

The LA County Democratic Party has voted to stop injecting gas into the field below the Ballona Wetlands, but despite public opposition, Governor Newsom’s administration secretly issued the California Geologic Energy Management Division (CalGEM) permits behind the scenes to continue work at the gas facility without a certified Environmental Impact Report or a full coastal development permit.

SoCalGas claims to be abandoning these wells, but plans for this “restoration” project reveal repositioning of the gas wells right outside the ecological reserve in order to continue storing gas beneath the wetlands, in a process called “slant drilling.” The gas field will be the same size and equally as dangerous to wild animals and the surrounding community.

Help In Defense of Animals (IDA) urge Governor Newsom to halt this destructive project that would kill wild animals, bulldoze the wetlands, and counter his new executive order to reduce climate impacts from fossil fuels.

Instead, let’s encourage officials to improve the wetlands by a gentle approach that would ensure the survival of wild animals and their precious habitat.

What you can do:

Contact decision-makers who can stop new SoCalGas activity at Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve until adequate environmental review and permits are completed. Federal laws and the California Coastal Act must be followed. Tribal consultation is also required for this site.

1. Please make polite phone calls to the following officials asking that they stop the destruction of the Ballona Wetlands and take steps to move away from fossil fuels.

Governor Gavin Newsom at (916) 445-2841

Governor Gavin Newsom’s Office, Senior Policy Advocate for Energy, Alice Reynoldsa at (916) 445-6212

Secretary of Natural Resources, Wade Crowfoot at (916) 653-5656

California Coastal Commission, Executive Director, Jack Ainsworth at (415) 904-5202

Kamala Harris’ California State Director, Heather Hutt at (310) 231-4494

Congressman Ted Lieu at (323) 651-1040

Congresswoman Maxine Waters at (323) 757-8900

2. Please send In Defense of Animals’ letter expressing your disappointment that destructive activity is taking place in Ballona Wetlands and urge them to take action to preserve these unique wetlands HERE!

IDA’s alert will immediately deliver your comments to the officials listed above.

Content courtesy of In Defense of Animals. Help them continue fighting for animals, people, and the environment by making a donation HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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