The March Public Community Advisory Panel meeting will be happening on Thursday night and it’s critical for Culver City residents to show up and speak about their experience living next to the Inglewood Oil Field in Baldwin Hills.
Many people in Culver City don’t know that they are living next door to the largest active urban oil field in the country. In the past five years, the field has changed hands twice; from PXP to FreeportMcMoran, and now to Sentinel Peak. All of these companies are based out of state, and doing whatever they can to get the last of the oil out of the old wells, some of which have been pumping for decades, with very little regard for the people living next to the field.
While there is empirical evidence of health problems being related to the use of hazardous chemicals in the oil extraction process, there has been next to no response from the oil companies, and little regulation by the state.
The current Culver City city council has voiced hopes of turning the oil field into a park. With proper soil remediation and planning, this is not a pipe dream, but a viable option.
The active level of hazard posed by drilling for oil right next to a geologic fault line is off the charts. The proximity of residents is measured in feet, not miles. The lack of concern on the part of all three of the companies that have used the Baldwin Hills Oil Field has been well documented. The state of California has been largely unresponsive, and residents who have been active in trying to get regulations and limits put on the oil drilling have made slow progress.
Some of that forward movement will be seen at the Thursday meeting; the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SC AQMD) will have a representative present, to officially track all the air pollution. AQMD is one of the departments that people can call when they smell noxious fumes.
There will be a representative from California Air Resource Board (CARB) to talk about the fact that this region has been selected as the next community for the AB617 SNAPS air monitoring program. This may have major implications for documentation of the extensive air pollution caused by the continued production from this oil field.
The main agenda item for the March meeting is focused towards an update on the Health Study that is required to be completed by the Department of Pubic Health. What the meeting may accomplish would be creating a schedule for ‘next steps’ and a timeline.
The March Community Advisory Panel (CAP) Public Meeting will take place on Thursday, March 28th 7pm – 9pm at the Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area Community Center, 4100 South La Cienega Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90056 Meeting is held in the park. Go past the gate to the community center to find the meeting room.