NEW PROBE: California regulators have launched an investigation into offshore hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, after revelations that the practice had quietly occurred off the coast for the past two decades.

REGULATORY FOG: The California Coastal Commission promised to look into the extent of fracking and any potential risks. The commission was not aware of the fracking until recently, mainly because of the complicated web of agencies involved.

DISASTER SITE: A recent report by The Associated Press documented at least a dozen instances of fracking since the late 1990s in the Santa Barbara Channel, site of a disastrous 1969 oil platform blowout. Federal regulators approved a new project earlier this year, but work has not started.

 

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