Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Dear Common Dreams Readers:
Corporations and billionaires have their own media. Shouldn't we? When you “follow the money” that funds our independent journalism, it all leads back to this: people like you. Our supporters are what allows us to produce journalism in the public interest that is beholden only to people, our planet, and the common good. Please support our Mid-Year Campaign so that we always have a newsroom for the people that is funded by the people. Thank you for your support. --Jon Queally, managing editor

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

Pumpjacks on Lost Hills Oil Field in California on Route 46.

Pumpjacks on Lost Hills Oil Field in California on Route 46. (Photo: Arne Hückelheim, Wikimedia Commons)

Groups Warn Against Trump Effort to Unleash 'Fracking Frenzy' by Unlocking Million+ Acres of Public Land for Drilling

"There's no place for this backwards plan in California's clean energy future."

Eoin Higgins

Over 1 million acres of California land will be opened to fracking if Donald Trump has his way according to a plan released just hours after his administration shelved efforts to expand offshore drilling. 

The president announced the plans in a draft released by the administration on Thursday afternoon. The proposal calls for opening  1,011,470 acres of public holdings in California to oil drilling and fracking.

The new proposal comes on the same day as the administration pulled out of a controversial plan to expand offshore drilling was thrown out by a federal judge in Alaska.

In a statement, Natural Resources Defense Council legislative director for the Nature Program Alexandra Adams said that the program should be completely ended. 

"President Trump's wildly unpopular and risky offshore drilling plan needs to be more than sidelined," said Adams. "It should be deep-sixed permanently."

Yet the California rule proposal is the kind of decision that could have disastrous effects on the environment, said Clare Lakewood, senior attorney for the Center for Biological Diversity.

"Trump's plan would unleash a fracking frenzy that puts California's people and wildlife in harm's way," said Lakewood. "This administration is dead set on letting oil and gas companies dig up every last drop of dirty fuel."

The decision, if it goes through, would be the first time in six years that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issues a land lease since a judge ruled the agency's issuance of fracking certificates violated the National Environmental Policy Act.

That track record doesn't give much hope to green groups. The Sierra Club's Monica Embrey, a senior campaign representative with the group, said her organization was prepared to throw down against the administration's assault on public land.

"Expanding extraction of dirty fossil fuels on our public lands threatens the health of our communities and the future of our climate," said Embrey. "We will push back every step of the way against this reckless plan to subject more of California's lands, wildlife, and communities to fracking."

California environmentalists hope to push the administration to abandon this plan too, said Earthjustice attorney Greg Loarie.

"Californians don't want fracking on our beautiful public lands any more than President Trump wants fracking on the greens of his Mar-a-Lago golf course," said Loarie. "There's no place for this backwards plan in California's clean energy future."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

"I'm sure this will be all over the corporate media, right?"
That’s what one longtime Common Dreams reader said yesterday after the newsroom reported on new research showing how corporate price gouging surged to a nearly 70-year high in 2021. While major broadcasters, newspapers, and other outlets continue to carry water for their corporate advertisers when they report on issues like inflation, economic inequality, and the climate emergency, our independence empowers us to provide you stories and perspectives that powerful interests don’t want you to have. But this independence is only possible because of support from readers like you. You make the difference. If our support dries up, so will we. Our crucial Mid-Year Campaign is now underway and we are in emergency mode to make sure we raise the necessary funds so that every day we can bring you the stories that corporate, for-profit outlets ignore and neglect. Please, if you can, support Common Dreams today.

 

Harris Says White House Not 'Discussing' Use of Federal Land for Abortion Care

Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are among the Democratic lawmakers who have expressed support for the idea as GOP-controlled states move to outlaw abortion.

Jake Johnson ·


Abortion Rights Defenders Applaud Judge's Block on Utah 'Trigger Ban'

"Today is a win, but it is only the first step in what will undoubtedly be a long and difficult fight," said one pro-choice advocate.

Brett Wilkins ·


Scores Feared Dead and Wounded as Russian Missiles Hit Ukraine Shopping Center

"People just burned alive," said Ukraine's interior minister, while the head of the Poltava region stated that "it is too early to talk about the final number of the killed."

Brett Wilkins ·


Biodiversity Risks Could Persist for Decades After Global Temperature Peak

One study co-author said the findings "should act as a wake-up call that delaying emissions cuts will mean a temperature overshoot that comes at an astronomical cost to nature and humans that unproven negative emission technologies cannot simply reverse."

Jessica Corbett ·


Amnesty Report Demands Biden Take Action to End Death Penalty

"The world is waiting for the USA to do what almost 100 countries have achieved during this past half-century—total abolition of the death penalty," said the group.

Julia Conley ·

Common Dreams Logo