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house Bill H.R. 1333

Should Oil & Gas Drilling Occur at Least 1,500 Feet Away From Homes, Businesses, or Schools?

Argument in favor

The federal government should require that there be a 1,500 foot buffer between oil and gas drilling operations and nearby homes, schools, and businesses to minimize the health and safety threat the energy extraction activities pose.

Ken's Opinion
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04/05/2019
Yes it should. Include the Arctic Circle and our precious oceans, rivers, and streams.
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IllWill's Opinion
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04/05/2019
Oil and gas drilling operations near homes, businesses, or schools is a public health nightmare! Nobody should live with the risk of breathing in toxic gases including ozone from these operations. We desperately need to move this country away from dirty energy which is destroying the livability of our planet and creating a multitude of health problems. Increasing the amount of energy generated from renewable sources must be the way forward!
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Taylor's Opinion
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04/05/2019
Oil drilling should not be happening at all. We need to move towards renewable energy sources.
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Argument opposed

There’s not convincing evidence that living or being near oil and gas drilling threatens people’s health, so this bill seems like a solution in search of a problem. Besides, without research on the subject a 1,500 foot buffer is arbitrary.

cullenwatkins's Opinion
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04/05/2019
We should keep our focus on green energy such as hydroelectric and nuclear energy. It may take a while, but we slowly need to make the change before things get out of hand!
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JTJ's Opinion
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04/05/2019
This is not the federal governments business. Leave this to land owners and local government to decide.
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Howard 's Opinion
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04/05/2019
Get educated on the subject from those that work in the industry before making a decision
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Natural Resources
      Energy and Mineral Resources
    IntroducedFebruary 25th, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 1333?

This bill — known as the No Drilling in Our Backyards Act — would prohibit the Dept. of the Interior from issuing a permit for any oil or gas drilling operation that’d be located within 1,500 feet of a home, business, school, or other building that the agency determines needs special protection.

Impact

Oil and drilling operations near populated areas; and the Dept. of the Interior.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1333

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthSponsoring Rep. Nanette Barragan (D-CA) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to require that all oil and gas drilling occur at least 1,500 feet away from homes, schools, and businesses:

“Urban oil and gas drilling does not belong in our neighborhoods -- oil wells next to homes are causing a public health crisis in our communities. In my district, CA-44, oil wells are in our backyards and next to parks where children play. They are breathing in the pollution from oil drilling operations and suffering the health impacts such as asthma and respiratory problems.”

The Sierra Club supports this bill. When Rep. Barragan introduced this bill in the 115th Congress, Lena Moffit, Senior Director of the Sierra Club's Our Wild America campaign, said:

"No community should be forced to live with the daily threat of pollution from oil and gas operations in their neighborhoods. It’s time our government took steps to ensure that Americans’ public health is prioritized over fossil fuel industry profits, and that the places our families live, work, and go to school are safe from toxic air pollution."

There are no cosponsors of this bill in the 116th Congress. Last Congress, it had the support of nine Democratic cosponsors and didn't receive a committee vote.


Of NoteRep. Barragan’s office notes that the city of Dallas, TX has a 1,500 setback rule and that other efforts have been undertaken to create or expand “setbacks” -- which are buffers between oil and gas drilling and homes, businesses, and schools.

In the 2018 midterm election, Colorado voters voted down Proposition 112, the Minimum Distance Requirements for New Oil, Gas, and Fracking Projects Initiative, which would have established a statewide setback of 1,000 feet from property lines for drilling. However, on December 18, 2018, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission voted unanimously to adopt a rule to measure the existing 1,000-foot drilling setback from property lines rather than buildings, effectively increasing the setback requirements from schools and childcare facilities, effective as of the end of January 2019.

Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: deepblush4you / iStock)

AKA

No Drilling in Our Backyards Act

Official Title

To amend the Mineral Leasing Act to create a buffer in between oil and gas drilling operations and homes, businesses, schools, and other buildings that require special protection, and for other purposes.

    Yes it should. Include the Arctic Circle and our precious oceans, rivers, and streams.
    Like (116)
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    We should keep our focus on green energy such as hydroelectric and nuclear energy. It may take a while, but we slowly need to make the change before things get out of hand!
    Like (59)
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    Share
    Oil and gas drilling shouldn’t occur at all
    Like (88)
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    Oil and gas drilling operations near homes, businesses, or schools is a public health nightmare! Nobody should live with the risk of breathing in toxic gases including ozone from these operations. We desperately need to move this country away from dirty energy which is destroying the livability of our planet and creating a multitude of health problems. Increasing the amount of energy generated from renewable sources must be the way forward!
    Like (70)
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    Oil drilling should not be happening at all. We need to move towards renewable energy sources.
    Like (62)
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    1500 feet is only .28 miles. Drilling, holding tanks and related equipment should be a minimum of 1/2 mile from any home, business, school, or similar type of building. Crude oil is a toxic substance. We need to minimize the risk of contamination, not encourage contamination.
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    I suspect that distance is too small actually. Definitely 1500 foot away at absolute minimum. 3281 feet/ 1 km would be better. Also can we please use the metric system. Imperial is idiotic.
    Like (29)
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    This is not the federal governments business. Leave this to land owners and local government to decide.
    Like (28)
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    OMG, what an outrageously stupid question! Better yet, how about NO MORE OIL OR GAS DRILLING PERIOD? And will someone please tell me why we subsidize these companies that make billions of dollars A QUARTER? JUST ONE OF THE REASONS WE ARE THE LAUGHING STOCK OF THE WORLD! Somebody made a lot of money pushing that through! And will somebody tell me why Nunes (R-CA) gets a farm subsidy and how many OTHER of our illustrious (🤮) Congressmen and women DO?
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    Oil and gas drilling is incompatible with good health.
    Like (24)
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    If this country doesn’t go to renewables right now-humans are doomed. STOP drilling! Renewable energy and jobs!
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    The toxic waste from oil & gas drilling is horrendous and stays FOREVER. NO WAY IT SHOULD EVEN BE THAT CLOSE. I GOT AN IDEA. LETS STOP MORE DRILLING & FIND RENEWABLE ENERGY FROM PLANTS ETC.
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    Setbacks from geologically important sites and environmentally fragile sites are also extremely important. Plus there should be no drilling on Public lands in State and National Parks, wetlands or waterways or near ground water. For those of you wondering, setbacks in Colorado are currently only 500 feet.
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    Drilling produces catastrophes like oil leaks into water that continue to poison for years. 1500 feet doesn’t protect anyone. We need to replace oil with renewable energy like solar, wind, and plant oils. It is insane to continue planetary climate change with oil burning and to pretend that an arbitrary number of feet protect us. They don’t. Let’s work to save each other and save this beautiful earth now.
    Like (13)
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    Oil and gas drilling operations near homes, businesses, or schools is a public health nightmare! Nobody should live with the risk of breathing in toxic gases including ozone from these operations. We desperately need to move this country away from dirty energy which is destroying the livability of our planet and creating a multitude of health problems. Increasing the amount of energy generated from renewable sources must be the way forward!
    Like (12)
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    Protect our citizens!
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    How about 150 miles from populations? 150 miles from environmentally sensitive areas.
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    There shouldn't be any drilling near people's homes or schools. That limit is not that far away.
    Like (11)
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    How about 5,280 feet away from any habitable structure or place of business? If the structure is a religious establishment, then dirty Republicans can drill within 10 feet of the building.
    Like (11)
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    How about we stop drilling altogether and put our resources towards renewable energies?
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