President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster

Please add your name to this petition by Richard Mathews, a resident of Los Angeles County who has been fighting to protect Porter Ranch from the fossil-fuel industry, and whose family is directly affected by the ongoing climate disaster of the explosive natural gas leak at the SoCalGas Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Area.

 

"Dear President Obama: Declare Los Angeles County to be a national disaster area due to the massive fracked gas leak at the SoCalGas Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility."

I’m Richard Mathews and I live within smelling distance of the fracked natural gas leak that has been spewing methane and toxins into the Los Angeles air since at least October 23, coming from an underground storage area above the suburb of Porter Ranch and holding fracked natural gas imported from other states. The company responsible is Southern California Gas, a subsidiary of Sempra Energy.

I live four miles from the site of this toxic disaster—the largest natural gas leak in U.S. history—and can smell the nasty fumes. But it’s even worse for people like my 88-year-old mother, who lives with me and is suffering from headaches and nausea but who feels she is too old to handle relocation. Thousands of families have fled their homes, and many more are still getting sick. Others like my mother are on the waiting list to get air purifiers. The leak isn't expected to be fixed until Halliburton completes drilling a relief well around March.

Methane is an extremely potent greenhouse gas contributing to rapid warming—over 80 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. The greenhouse impact of this leak is the equivalent of the pollution from seven million cars or six coal-fired power plants. I’ve calculated that this leak spews more gas, by volume, into the atmosphere than the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster leaked oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

That global disaster troubles climate hawks like me. But equally worrisome, methane is highly explosive, and the chemicals mixed with the methane are making people sick. These include methyl mercaptan (the rotten-egg-smell they add to natural gas), benzene, radon, hydrogen sulfide, and a mist of crude oil. While the methane spreads around the world, these toxins stay close to the ground and accumulate in our valley.

On January 6, California Gov. Jerry Brown dropped by for an hour and declared it a disaster. Now, President Obama needs to meet with affected residents, understand the havoc wreaked by his pro-fracking policy, and declare the site a national disaster area.

President Obama’s national disaster declaration will help residents get tax benefits, mortgage relief, and federal resources to improve health—and help this nation to start fighting back against the out-of-control fracking industry.

Please add your name to mine today.

"Dear President Obama: Declare Los Angeles County to be a national disaster area due to the massive fracked gas leak at the SoCalGas Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility."

1,202 signatures

Who's signing

Pam Ramirez
Camilla Gonzales
Sara Kent
Jackie Lauth
Mary Hsia-Coron Hsia-Coron
Janet Johnson
Christina Viljoen
Pennie Opal Plant
Louise Chegwidden
r johnson
Brian Fink
Anna Laskowska
Shoshana Wechsler
Lisa Hart
Beth Jane Freeman
kenn ballou
Aleta Halter
Elizabeth Morrison
Carol Hill
Marc Franklin
Glen Risdon
William Phillips
Martin Cohen
Nicole Maschke

Showing 1234 reactions

  • Pam Ramirez
    signed 2016-01-12 12:50:48 -0800
  • Camilla Gonzales
    posted about this on Facebook 2016-01-12 12:49:29 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster
  • Camilla Gonzales
    signed 2016-01-12 12:48:22 -0800
  • Sara Kent
    signed 2016-01-12 12:47:06 -0800
  • Jackie Lauth
    signed 2016-01-12 12:41:05 -0800
  • Mary Hsia-Coron Hsia-Coron
    signed 2016-01-12 12:27:04 -0800
  • Janet Johnson
    posted about this on Facebook 2016-01-12 12:26:45 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster
  • Janet Johnson
    @electricista545 tweeted link to this page. 2016-01-12 12:26:43 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster http://www.climatehawksvote.com/porter_ranch_fracking_disaster?recruiter_id=1825850
  • Janet Johnson
    signed 2016-01-12 12:26:18 -0800
  • Christina Viljoen
    signed 2016-01-12 12:23:13 -0800
  • Pennie Opal Plant
    signed 2016-01-12 12:18:54 -0800
  • Louise Chegwidden
    signed 2016-01-12 12:18:33 -0800
  • r johnson
    signed 2016-01-12 12:16:46 -0800
  • Brian Fink
    signed 2016-01-12 12:14:56 -0800
  • Anna Laskowska
    signed via 2016-01-12 12:08:30 -0800
  • Shoshana Wechsler
    signed 2016-01-12 11:48:40 -0800
  • Lisa Hart
    signed 2016-01-12 11:46:08 -0800
  • Beth Freeman
    posted about this on Facebook 2016-01-12 11:43:53 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster
  • Beth Jane Freeman
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:43:26 -0800
    The potential for life threatening fires is too great.
  • kenn ballou
    signed 2016-01-12 11:42:33 -0800
  • Aleta Halter
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:29:50 -0800
  • Elizabeth Morrison
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:29:32 -0800
    The leak includes Benzene – highly toxic
  • Carol Hill
    signed 2016-01-12 11:21:51 -0800
  • Marc Franklin
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:20:36 -0800
  • Glen Risdon
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:04:59 -0800
  • William Phillips
    posted about this on Facebook 2016-01-12 11:04:30 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster
  • William Phillips
    @OlProfBear tweeted link to this page. 2016-01-12 11:04:26 -0800
    Sign the petition: President Obama: Declare The Porter Ranch Gas Leak A National Disaster http://www.climatehawksvote.com/porter_ranch_fracking_disaster?recruiter_id=1827521
  • William Phillips
    signed via 2016-01-12 11:04:00 -0800
  • Martin Cohen
    signed via 2016-01-12 10:57:48 -0800
    I work at both California State University, Northridge, and Mission College in Sylmar – I am exposed regularly to these toxins!
  • Nicole Maschke
    signed 2016-01-12 10:57:30 -0800