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    Lawsuit seeks documents revealing extent of offshore fracking

    News // January 12, 2015

    The Center for Biological Diversity sued the federal government for failing to release public documents revealing the extent and risks of offshore fracking in the Gulf of Mexico.

    The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington DC, argues that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement must disclose permits, reports, emails and other documents related to the federal government’s approval for oil and gas companies to frack offshore wells in the Gulf.

    “The public has a right to know where, when and how much fracking the federal government is allowing in the Gulf of Mexico,” said Kristen Monsell, a Center attorney. “Offshore fracking has been shrouded in secrecy in the Gulf, but we know this dangerous activity pollutes our water and air and poses a toxic threat to marine wildlife and fragile ocean ecosystems.”

    The Center filed a Freedom of Information Act request last year, but the government has failed to respond. The lawsuit seeks an immediate response from the government and prompt disclosure of the requested documents

    Offshore fracking blasts water and industrial chemicals into the seafloor at pressures high enough to crack geologic formations and release oil and gas. The federal government allowed oil and gas companies to frack at least 115 offshore wells in the Gulf of Mexico in 2013, according to recent reports.

     

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