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Kern County Supervisors Vote To "Streamline" Oil Permitting

Joe Moore
Valley Public Radio
On oil field in Taft, CA (file photo)

The Kern County Board of Supervisors has approved new rules that supporters say will streamline oil and gas production.

The unanimous vote by the board Monday endorses a new environmental report that will make most surface production activities go through a process similar to the one to get a building permit.

The state will still regulate subsurface operations.

The proposal was backed by the local oil industry but drew considerable opposition, not just from groups like the Sierra Club, but also from farmers who have clashed with oil producers who own the mineral rights below their orchards and fields.