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Don't let state regulators off the hook for failing to adequately regulate Aliso Canyon

Don't let state regulators off the hook for failing to adequately regulate Aliso Canyon
Crews work to stop the flow of natural gas from the Aliso Canyon storage facility near Los Angeles in November 2015. (Javier Mendoza / Associated Press)

To the editor: You cite a letter the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) sent me on its proposed moratorium on new gas hookups, an action I oppose because it unnecessarily impacts residents and businesses without measurably reducing the amount of gas at Aliso Canyon. ("A natural gas crisis has put California at an energy crossroads," editorial, Jan. 27)

The PUC's claim that the county failed to step up for its residents following the Aliso Canyon disaster is absurd considering the months of hard work by multiple agencies assisting residents on issues ranging from promised relocation benefits to house decontamination. The county is in litigation with the Southern California Gas Co. and the PUC for ignoring our request to delay gas injections at the well until the root cause analysis was completed and earthquake risks were fully investigated.

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To date, state regulators have still failed to require a full environmental and safety review at Aliso Canyon.

The PUC is deflecting from the fact that it failed to adequately regulate Aliso Canyon leading to the largest natural gas leak in U.S. history. However, Los Angeles County will continue to act to protect or residents from future leaks, and we look forward to the PUC's support of this important goal.

Kathryn Barger, Los Angeles

The writer is a member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

Follow the Opinion section on Twitter @latimesopinion and Facebook

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