BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Inspections by water officials have found numerous oil industry wastewater pits operating without permits across Central California.
The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board says producers have been dumping chemical-laden wastewater into as many as 300 unlined, shallow troughs in Kern County.
The Los Angeles Times reports that more than one-third of the region’s active disposal pits are operating without permission.
Kern County, which is heavily agricultural, accounts for at least 80 percent of California’s oil production.
The newspaper says the pits, which are gouged out of dirt, hold toxic water that is produced from fracking and other operations.
Clay Rodgers, an official with the water board, called the unregulated pits a “significant problem.” He said the agency expects to issue as many as 200 enforcement orders.
Information from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com/
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