Proponents Turn in Signatures for Santa Barbara Energy Ban that Will Drive Up Energy Costs, Put Jobs in Jeopardy

Following the news that proponents of an initiative to ban hydraulic fracturing and shut down conventional oil production in Santa Barbara have submitted signatures, Californians for a Safe, Secure Energy Future issued the following statement:

“This arbitrary ban puts our state’s energy independence at risk, which will result in higher prices at the pump for drivers.  The demand for oil will not disappear overnight, so we should produce it safely and affordably here instead of relying on more expensive foreign imports. California has the strongest safeguards in the nation for oil and gas extraction.  Voters shouldn’t be scared into adopting a ban that could raise gas prices and threaten the thousands of local jobs the industry creates,” Ken Oplinger, President/CEO of The Chamber of Commerce of the Santa Barbara Region.

California’s oil and gas industry provides hundreds of thousands of jobs and pays billions in tax revenue each year, according to a new study by the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) released by the Western States Petroleum Association. Highlights from the report include:

  • In 2012, the petroleum industry contributed to 24,210 total jobs on the Central Coast and generated more than $1.6 billion in labor income.
  • On the Central Coast, the state and local taxes paid by the petroleum industry totaled $1.1 billion in 2012.
  • In Santa Barbara County, the petroleum industry contributed to 6,341 total jobs and generated more than $502 million in labor income.
  • Jobs created or supported by the petroleum industry statewide generate $40 billion in labor income, which is 3.1% of California’s total labor income.
  • Statewide, the petroleum industry’s total economic value is $113 billion, which is 5.4% of California’s total gross domestic product and is larger than the economies of 17 U.S. states.