The time allowed for public comments on the draft of the Environmental Impact Report began on Friday September 15, 2017 and will remain open until November 14, 2017. The Draft EIR can be viewed or downloaded at the City’s website at www.culvericty.org/inglewoodoilfield.
In a press release from the city of Culver City, notice was made available to “all responsible agencies and interested parties that the City of Culver City, as the Lead Agency, has prepared a Draft Environmental Impact Report (Draft EIR) pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) that evaluates the potential environmental impacts of the proposed project identified below. The Draft EIR indicates that, even with the mitigation measures described in the Draft EIR, the proposed project would result in significant and unavoidable environmental impacts.”
The Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan area is approximately 77.8 acres within the larger approximately 1,000-acre Inglewood Oil Field, and is referred to as the Project Site. Located at the northern end of the Inglewood Oil Field, in the eastern section of Culver City, and is generally bound by La Cienega Boulevard to the east; the City of Culver City (City) and Los Angeles County line to the south; Culver City Park and College Boulevard to the west; and the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook, Stoneview Nature Center, and the Blair Hills residential area in Culver City to the north.
The primary entitlement action associated with the project includes the adoption of the proposed Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan (Specific Plan). The Specific Plan would update and supersede the City’s existing oil drilling regulations; it is intended to address the changes that have occurred in the last decade in oil production-related technology and legislation, with the purpose of establishing safeguards and controls for activities related to drilling for and production of oil, gas, and other hydrocarbon substances within the City IOF. The Project would require a Zoning Code Amendment (ZCA), to (1) amend Zoning Code Section 17.610.010.D to specify that the Specific Plan regulations will apply to oil and gas production uses in the City IOF, and (2) amend Zoning Code Chapter 17.570 to add new Section 17.570.030, which would identify the Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan as an adopted and established specific plan. The Project would also adopt the following Culver City Municipal Code (CCMC) Amendments: (1) Repeal CCMC Chapter 11.12, Oil, Gas and Hydrocarbons, which will be updated and superseded by the “Drilling Regulations for the Culver City Portion of the Inglewood Oil Field” contained in the Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan; and (2) Amend CCMC Section 9.07.060 (Noise Regulations, Exemption from Provisions) to add that oil operations within the City IOF are exempt from the provisions of CCMC Chapter 9.07 Noise Regulations, and instead shall comply with the provisions of the Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan.
The Specific Plan Drilling Regulations contain several administrative items, requirements for permits, plans, wells, supporting facilities, equipment, and operations to help reduce health and safety impacts on the surrounding community. Development of the City IOF, in accordance with the Specific Plan, would occur over a period of 15 years, assumed to range from 2018 through 2032; however, it is possible that the span of development could be as short as 11 years under an accelerated drilling schedule. Once the maximum cap of 30 new wells has been met, no further drilling would be allowed, but active or potentially active wells would be allowed to continue in operation until the City IOF is closed.
In general, typical activities that could be allowed in the City IOF, subject to the Drilling Regulations under the Specific Plan, include the following: well pad grading and other earth-moving activities; new oil well drilling (up to a maximum of 30 new wells); well completion (including potential hydraulic fracturing and gravel packing); oil/gas production wells and Class II wells for injection (i.e., waterflooding); well rework and routine maintenance; well plugging and abandonment; new tank and pipeline construction; operation and maintenance of all oil facilities; landscape irrigation and maintenance; worker vehicular traffic; and equipment transport, storage and use.
According to the city’s press release, the Draft EIR finds that the Project would have no impact or less than significant impacts on Aesthetics; Agriculture and Forestry Resources; Cultural and Tribal Resources; Land Use and Planning; Mineral Resources; Population and Housing; Public Services; Recreation; and Transportation and Traffic. Prior to mitigation, Project implementation would result in potentially significant impacts to Air Quality; Biological Resources; Geology, Soils, and Seismicity; Greenhouse Gas Emissions; Hazards, Hazardous Materials, and Risk of Upset; Hydrology and Water Quality; Noise; and Utilities. However, mitigation measures have been developed to avoid or reduce these impacts to levels considered less than significant, except for the following that would remain as significant and unavoidable impacts: Air Quality (localized significance thresholds [LST] emissions of nitrogen oxides [NOx], respirable particulate matter with a diameter of 10 microns or less [PM10], and respirable matriculate matter with a diameter of 2.5 microns or less [PM2.5]); Geology, Soils, and Seismicity (induced seismicity from well stimulation treatments); and Noise (overnight drilling).
The Project Site is not listed on the Cortese List compiled pursuant to Government Code Section 65962.5.
The 60-day public review period of the Draft EIR begins on Friday, September 15, 2017 and ends on Tuesday, November 14, 2017. Written comments should be received by the City on or before November 14, 2017 at 5:30 PM. Written comments should be labeled with “Subject: Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan Project” and be directed via email to IOFSpecificPlanProject@culvercity.org, by fax to (310) 253-5664, or by mail to:
City Attorney’s Office
City of Culver City
9770 Culver Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232
Attention: Heather Baker, Assistant City Attorney
Subject: Inglewood Oil Field Specific Plan Project
The Draft EIR can be viewed or downloaded at the City’s website at www.culvericty.org/inglewoodoilfield.