An oil company will pay a $60,000 penalty for discharging fracking fluid into an unlined pit in Kern County.
Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board said in a statement Friday that Vintage Production California discharged saline water and hydraulic fracturing liquid into an unlined pit for 12 days last year. The pit was next to a newly drilled oil well near Shafter, about 20 miles northwest of Bakersfield.
Of course, $60,000 is a pittance in the oil industry, especially for a fracking operation that is successful. What’s amazing of course is that we even heard about this. It was caught and a fine was issued. But the company clearly believed it wouldn’t be caught and in given the lax regulatory structures of the United States in 2013, I’m sure it was a good bet that it just didn’t win.