Fracking Regulations Only Exxon Could Love

By Judy Dugan

California's oil and gas industry regulators are about to write final state regulations on the controversial practice of fracking natural gas and oil wells in the state. Don't expect any backbone, however, from the state Department of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Regulation. So far, the draft proposals boil down to "trust the oil industry."

Studies Find California "Fracking" Wells May Kill Livestock, Family Pets

By Dan Aiello

As the deadline for public comment on California Governor Jerry Brown, Jr.'s proposed new regulations on fracking are set to close in just seven days, reports are surfacing of the potential impact on the state's agriculture, farm animals and family pets from this controversial method of oil extraction.

Hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as "fracking," is an oil extraction process used on shale, depleted wells and tar-like "heavy" oil deposits. The production process involves the injection of steam, water, sand and rocket propellant into the ground to bubble to the surface the oil reserves. It has been known to make fertile California farmland barren and contaminate groundwater tables.

Brown Announces New Oil Industry Regulations Ahead of "Promised Land" Release

By Dan Aiello

The Brown administration Tuesday proposed new draft regulations that would require the oil industry to disclose where in California its oil extraction operations are using hydraulic fracturing, commonly referred to as "fracking," in advance of a new movie starring Matt Damon meant to bring public awareness to the environmental destruction caused by the practice.

California Gas Prices: A Rigged Game Where Consumers Lose Big

By Liza Tucker

Who would want two companies, Tesoro and Chevron, to control more than half of California's gasoline market? Only people, like oil company executives, who think paying five dollars a gallon should be the new normal.

That could happen, though, if a deal goes through for Tesoro to buy BP's refinery in Carson and its low-cost Arco brand. In California, the ninth largest economy in the world, gasoline refineries have shrunk from 32 in the mid-1980s to just 14, owned by only a handful of companies. The more consolidated a market, the more tempting it is to make more money by producing and selling less gasoline. California's gasoline market is so consolidated that it is now geared to shortages and scarcity, which is why a few refinery outages and some scheduled refinery maintenance can cause a price spike of the sort you should only see in the wake of a real disaster.

Massive Tumors in Rats Fed Monsanto's Genetically Engineered Corn

By Gary Ruskin

The results are in from the first-ever peer-reviewed long-term health study of genetically engineered food – and they are worrying. For two years, researchers fed rats a diet of genetically engineered corn that is common in the US food supply, and found massive mammary tumors, kidney and liver damage, and premature death. The study was published in the peer-reviewed journal, Food and Chemical Toxicology.

Prop 37 Solution to Walmart’s Untested, Unlabeled, Toxin Spliced Corn

By Zack Kaldveer
Yes on 37 Right to Know Campaign

As the summer winds down, family barbeques are in full swing and supermarkets are filled with shoppers searching for the right foods to grill up with friends and neighbors.

But do they really know what they’re buying? What they may not know is that Walmart has admitted it will soon start selling agrichemical giant Monsanto’s sweet corn, which has been genetically engineered with an insecticide inside it -- not on the corn, but IN it.

Bt toxin works as an insecticide by disintegrating the lining of insects’ stomachs when they chomp on the corn.  So what is this doing to the bodies of adults or children who eat the corn? We don’t know.

Mosquito Aerial Spray Programs Endanger Human Health, Don’t Work

By Kim Glazzard, Organic Sacramento; Samantha McCarthy, Better Urban Green Strategies; Jack Milton, Stop West Nile Spraying Now; Asael Sala, Pesticide Watch

Aerial mosquito spraying over populated areas this year by the local mosquito control district used a more hazardous pesticide than in previous years. While there is no scientific evidence that the spray is effective in stopping the spread of West Nile virus (WNv), there is evidence that the spraying endangers health.
The more dangerous pesticide used this year is an organophosphate. Similar to chemical warfare agents produced during World War II, this chemical adversely affects the human nervous system even at low exposure levels, and ingredients are on California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer.

Time to Ban the Bag

By Jenesse Miller
California League of Conservation Voters

It's time for the state of California to follow the lead of more than 50 of our cities and dump the plastic bag.

Named by Guinness World Records as "the most ubiquitous consumer item in the world," single-use plastic bags are a leading source of pollution worldwide, including in California. Californians use and throw away 12 billion (yes, that's billion with a "b") of these bags each year with devastating consequences for marine life.

FDA Bans Toxic BPA in Baby Bottles

By Jenesse Miller
California League of Conservation Voters

Do you want the good news first, or the bad news?

I'm a "good news first" kind of person, so here it is: The Food and Drug Administration recently announced that it is now illegal for baby bottles and sippy cups to contain the toxic chemical bisphenol-A (BPA). The announcement comes less than a year after California passed the Toxin-Free Infant and Toddlers Act, a ban on BPA in these products made or sold in California authored by Assemblymember Betsy Butler.

BPA was originally created as a synthetic sex hormone and is widely used in certain plastics and epoxy resins. Scientific studies link BPA exposure to increased risk of cancer, diabetes, obesity, ADHD, and reproductive, neurological, and developmental disorders in hundreds of peer-reviewed studies.

Are Toxic Chemicals In Your Home Your Problem?

By Christina Medina and Rebecca Fuoco

On Sunday an unusual and quirky red carpet award show in Hollywood brought the normally faceless and intangible issue of chemical exposure and regulation to life. The Third Annual “Toxies”, an event put on by Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles and Californians for a Healthy and Green Economy, featured actors in colorful costumes in-character as toxic chemicals accepting “awards” for the harm they are doing to the American public.

D.W. Moffett who stars in the ABC Family series Switched at Birth and TV Land’s Happily Divorced emceed the event portraying Tex Doolittle, an agent who promotes positive PR for the chemicals by twisting or even denying evidence of their toxicity, the role played in real life by chemical industry lobbyists.