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Center for Biological Diversity v. California Dep't of Conservation

ELR Citation: 45 ELR 20137
Nos. RG15769302, (Cal. Super. Ct., 07/16/2015)

A California court denied an environmental group's motion to preliminarily enjoin emergency regulations governing the underground injection of wastewater produced by oil drilling. The emergency regulations establish a timeline for companies to stop injecting into certain wells, but it still gives some companies until 2017 to obtain an exemption under the Safe Drinking Water Act. The court agreed with the group that contamination of nonexempt drinking water aquifers is possible and could occur prior to a final judgment in this case. Nevertheless, the threat of such contamination is theoretical and speculative, and the extreme cost and strain on state resources that would occur if an injunction were issued plainly outweighs the risk.