Head of California agency accused of favoring oil industry quits

An aerial view of pits containing production water from oil wells near California 33 and Lokern Road in Kern County.  (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)Mark Nechodom, the director of the California Department of Conservation, which oversees the embattled agency that regulates the state's oil and gas industry, resigned Thursday.

Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Nechodom to the post three years ago. He took over an agency that has generated significant controversy.

California's oil regulator, the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, has been facing scrutiny from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency after allowing oil producers to drill thousands of oilfield wastewater disposal wells into federally protected aquifers.

Nechodom was named this week in a federal lawsuit filed on behalf of a group of Kern County farmers who allege that Brown, the oil and gas division and others conspired with oil companies to allow the illegal injections and to create a more lax regulatory environment for energy firms.

Read more at the LA Times

Related article: Attorney Discusses RICO Lawsuit Involving Governor and Oil Companies: California’s “Water-Gate”


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  • Joel Gluck
    published this page in Home 2015-06-09 22:01:08 -0700
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