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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

New Study About Fracking Shows Harmful Effects

A new study about fracking has residents in the Windsor Hills community concerned about its harmful effects.

A new study about fracking has residents in the Windsor Hills community concerned about its harmful effects. A year long study found that fracking at the Inglewood Oil Field did not have a significant impact on air emisions, ground water quality and seismic activity.

Resident Gary Gless has lived in the area for 20 years. He says he's constantly patching up cracks caused by oil drilling at Inglewood Oil Field.

"My foundation of my house is cracked. My pool is cracking and shifting," Gless said. "We have neighbors... I mean there are serious signs of property damage."

Hydraulic fracturing or fracking is a technique that recovers natural gas and oil from rock formations. The oil field is surrounded by neighborhoods like Inglewood, Baldwin Hills, and Culver City and it sits on top of the Newport-Inglewood fault. It's also the largest urban oil field in the United States.

When it comes to the study, residents say they just aren't buying it. Gless is the co-founder of the Citizens Coalition for a Safe Community. He says he isn't surprised by the results of the study.

"It's the industry putting it out basically and they don't want to not drill. The main objective is for them to make money and anything contrary would stop that process," he said.

Plains Exploration and Production Company owns and operates the field. They released a statement about the studying saying, "The debate about hydraulic fracturing both locally and nationally has been predominantly driven by hypothetical fears.... This study provides factual answers derived from actual monitoring and testing results in accordance with the process required by the settlement agreement."

But it's the firms who did the analysis that concerns Gless.

"All their geology and training is in Texas and we have a completely different type of strata here. And just that alone creates higher risk," he said.

Gless said he will find flaws in the 260 page study and will continue to fight until changes in the field's oil production are made.

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