Governor Newsom

Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times (pool)

California oil and gas regulators announced today a series of initiatives aimed at better protecting public health and the environment, including more scrutiny of permitting for some extraction techniques and a moratorium on another called cyclic steam extraction. “These are necessary steps to strengthen oversight of oil and gas extraction as we phase out our dependence on fossil fuels and focus on clean energy sources,” wrote Governor Gavin Newsom in a press release.

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

Two Fresno City Councilmembers made an atypical move at a press conference today by throwing in their support for a clean water drinking fund—as long as it doesn’t involve a tax.

At Gaston Middle School in South Fresno, community members and advocates met to urge lawmakers to support the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund, a pot of money the legislature is considering creating in order to provide drinking water cleanup in disadvantaged communities.

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

Governor Gavin Newsom signed his first pieces of legislation into law on Wednesday, and he chose to sign them at a school where the water contains a carcinogen and kids can’t even use the drinking fountains.

Newsom opened his visit in a history classroom, introducing the bills to a room full of students at Riverview Elementary School in the Fresno County City of Parlier. “Shall we sign?” he asked, crouching down before the front row with a pen. “Yes,” they shouted, raising their hands excitedly.

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Of all the ground Governor Gavin Newsom covered in his first week in office, he already appears to be showing a commitment to improving the state’s drinking water.

On Friday, Governor Newsom took a road trip to Monterey Park Tract, an unincorporated community in Stanislaus County. There, he and his entourage heard concerns from residents about their drinking water, which they pipe in from the nearby city of Ceres and is known to contain a carcinogen known as 1,2,3-TCP.