The Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility, where the largest methane leak in U.S. history forced thousands to flee their homes, can resume natural gas injections at a reduced capacity, state officials said Wednesday.
The announcement follows months of inspections at the sprawling field above Porter Ranch and the implementation of new safety protocols that officials said will protect the public and stave off an energy shortage in Southern California.
“This facility will be held to the most rigorous monitoring, inspection and safety requirements in the nation and will store only the minimum gas necessary to supply the Los Angeles area,” Ken Harris, head of the state Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, said in a statement.
For months starting in 2015, a ruptured well at the facility spewed tens of thousands of tons of gas. Roughly 8,000 families in and around the northwest San Fernando Valley neighborhood were driven from their homes, with many complaining of health issues that included cancer, nausea and nosebleeds.
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