Los Angeles Urban Oil drilling: California’s Black Heroin
I am an NJIT senior studying Computing and Business. I was stationed in Southern California for some time and had to deal with the pollution on smog in the area. through this research I’d like to understand if California’s oil history has led to it’s urbanization and current hostile climate environment.
Oil was discovered in Los Angeles County in the early 1890’s, the ‘Los Angeles Oil Field’ was once the top producing oil field in California. Though Los Angeles county is the highest populated counties in the US, Los Angeles remains the largest urban oil field in the country. Oil rigs dot the city but are often hidden from sight through the use of tall fences, clandestine structures or by drilling in Los Angeles often overlooked low-income neighborhoods. Oil companies drill wells and use toxic industrial chemicals on well sites just feet away from homes, schools, and medical facilities. I want to study the history of the Los Angeles oil field and it’s relation with Los Angeles residents and the state’s dependency on continued oil production; in hope to understand if urban drilling has hazardous effects on the environment, analyze the systematic unfairness of the exploited urban communities, and look to see if California legislature is doing anything to ensure a greener future for all its residents.