Don't Let This Happen To Culver City

Special To The Observer

Let's not expose Culver City to possibly becoming another disaster like San Bruno or Porter Ranch. Inadequate regulations and private interests have too often gotten in the way of protecting people's rights. Fortunately we in Culver City will soon have the opportunity to protect what we hold dear. Culver City is soon coming out with a draft of environmental impacts (EIR) on proposed regulations for oil and gas (O&G) exploration and production on the oil field in our City. Our quality of life will be impacted by the resulting regulations. We will have a brief period to examine the EIR and offer suggestions/comments to help improve the proposed regulations to better serve and protect our health and safety. One thing we can do to protect our dwellings and all who live in them is to make sure the City requires an adequate surety bond as a prerequisite before issuing permits for any O&G production within Culver City.

The current state required bond for oil field operations is one million dollars. The 2010 San Bruno gas pipeline explosion destroyed 38 homes in a tony neighborhood similar to many in Culver City. Per › CA › San Bruno, the median real estate price there is $1,095,174.00. Just one small neighborhood lost over $40 million in real estate. This sum does not include the loss of lives, city infrastructure (streets, sidewalks, waterlines, etc), nor folks like you and me watching their most valuable financial asset and everything else they own there going up in flames.

We in Culver City are at risk of losing much, much more. In fact, a billion dollar surety bond may not even be adequate given Culver City's ever higher real estate values – and our even greater exposure to more severe risk. Not only do we have gas pipelines running from the oil field through Culver City, we also have crude oil pipelines. And we live on terrain that has many “veins” from the three major earthquake faults that traverse this area. Thus fires and toxins from a pipeline explosion could take weeks or even months to stop as we experienced recently with the Porter Ranch/Aliso Canyon disaster. Let's be good citizens and help Culver City! When the draft EIR comes out lets be prepared with the data on real costs we the taxpayers – anyone who lives or works in Culver City would incur if the oil company makes a mistake that could cost all that we hold dear. Would you be willing to work together to do the math regarding these costs? If yes, how about contacting me at to join our team.

Dr Suzanne DeBenedittis, PhD


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