Environmental Advocates, Including Children, Sue L.A., Accusing City of ‘Rubber Stamping’ Oil Drilling Plans

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Environmental groups that have accused Los Angeles of “rubber stamping” plans involving oil drilling near homes and schools are taking their fight to court.

Their lawsuit, filed Friday, accuses the city of systematically violating the California Environmental Quality Act by exempting new wells and other proposed changes at oil extraction sites from required environmental reviews.

The plaintiffs, who include children and teens living near drilling sites in South Los Angeles and Wilmington, also assert that the city has left predominantly black and Latino neighborhoods more vulnerable to health and safety risks tied to oil drilling than mostly white areas. Much more stringent conditions, including taller walls, better sound protection and less-polluting equipment, were imposed on drilling sites in West Los Angeles and the Wilshire area, they argue.
Oil drilling lawsuit

The groups suing the city — Youth for Environmental Justice, the Center for Biological Diversity and the South Central Youth Leadership Coalition — are asking the court to stop L.A. from approving new plans related to oil drilling without a “faithful application” of the state law. The suit also seeks to halt approvals that result in unequal protections for different neighborhoods.

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