The Division oversees the drilling, operation, maintenance, and plugging and abandonment of oil, natural gas, and geothermal wells. The regulatory program emphasizes the wise development of oil, natural gas, and geothermal resources in the state through sound engineering practices that protect the environment, prevent pollution, and ensure public safety.
All California oil and gas wells (development and prospect wells), enhanced-recovery wells, water-disposal wells, service wells (i.e. structure, observation, temperature observation wells), core-holes, and gas-storage wells, onshore and offshore (within three nautical miles of the coastline), located on state and private lands, are permitted, drilled, operated, maintained, plugged and abandoned under requirements and procedures administered by the Department of Conservation's Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR).
Aliso Canyon - Update
After putting numerous safeguards in place to protect public public safety and the environment - such as ongoing on-site inspections - the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources and California Public Utilities Commission have concurred that natural gas injection may resume at the Aliso Canyon storage facility. Before, and soon after, resuming injection, operator Southern California Gas must comply with the requirements of an order issued by the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR), including conducting flyovers to check methane levels.
Since the leak was plugged at the Los Angeles County facility 17 months ago, significant improvements and upgrades have been made to infrastructure, testing, operations, and monitoring to ensure safe operations. The Division completed a comprehensive safety review at Aliso Canyon in January, consulting with the Lawerence Livermore, Lawerence Berkeley and Sandia National Laboratories on extensive site inspections and review of Southern California Gas's testing. The facility will operate with significantly reduced storage capacity and maximum injection pressures.
Documents related to the decision to allow injection to resume and additional background materials can be found on this page.
Read the news release about this decision.
Idle Wells Regulations - AB 2729
AB 2729 is aimed at reducing the number of idle oil and gas wells in the state. California has more than 23,000 such wells, about half of which have been idle for more than 10 years. Idle wells, particularly long-term idle wells, are of concern because they pose a risk of desertion and, in some cases, environmental contamination. The Division seeks input on discussion draft regulations related to the plugging and abandonment, testing, remediation, and securing of idle wells, in addition to testing requirements for observation wells.
These regulations will be in place in mid-2018. More information can be found here:
Gas Pipeline Regulations - AB 1420
AB 1420 was created to protect public safety and hasten remediation in the event of a pipeline leak. This law was created in response to a leak in a small pipeline that forced about three dozen people from their homes for more than eight months in the Kern County community of Arvin. The Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources is seeking input on two regulatory areas that are in the informal, pre-rulemaking stage:
- discussion draft regulations for active gas pipelines that are four inches in diameter or smaller, located in areas defined as sensitive, and are 10 years old or older
- active gas piepline mapping and data submission requirements for operators
Once finalized, the new regulations will go into effect at the start of 2018. More information can be found here:
Comments about regulations also can be submitted via email
DOGGRRegulations@conservation.ca.gov or mail: Department of Conservation, 801 K Street, MS 24-02, Sacramento, CA 95814. Commentators should specify whether their input is about AB 2729 or AB 1420. Comments for AB 1420 will be accepted through July 21. Comments for AB 2729 will be accepted
through August 21. The comments received will be reviewed and considered as the Division develops its proposed regulations.
DOC Seeks Input on Natural Gas Storage Regulations
The Department of Conservation on May 19 released for public review
proposed regulations to further enhance the safe operation of natural gas storage facilities. The proposed regulations aim to prevent leaks, and include stronger well construction standards and requirements for daily testing of wellheads. Once adopted, these regulations will supplant emergency rules adopted after the Southern California Gas Company natural gas leak in Aliso Canyon that ended in early 2016. The formal documents for this rulemaking effort can be found
New Discussion Draft of UIC Regulations Available for Review
The Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources has released
Version 2 of its "discussion draft" regulations for the Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program, including new provisions to further protect the environment and public safety. The public is invited to submit comments through June 26. A public workshop will be held 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, May 24, in Bakersfield at the Four Points Sheraton, 5101 California Avenue.
The Department of Oil Gas and Geothermal Resources held a recruiting seminar on February 15, 2017 talking to people interested in applying for technical and management positions open in all offices, Orcutt, Ventura, Cypress, Bakersfield and Sacramento. Video replays are available from the following links:
Aliso Canyon Update
The Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (Division) has completed its comprehensive safety review at the Aliso Canyon Storage Facility. With safety as our top priority, the Division’s extensive
site inspections and review of Southern California Gas’s testing -- in consultation with the Lawrence Livermore, Lawrence Berkeley and Sandia National Laboratories -- was completed on January 17, 2017.
Regulators will not make a decision about whether injection of gas into the storage facility can resume until they review and respond to comments submitted by the public.
A webcast presentation of the rigorous testing done to all wells at the Aliso Canyon Storage Facility can be seen here: https://youtu.be/7rEOHVuqKf0.
Please join the
Division’s Aliso Canyon Updates email list to receive updates.
Test results submitted by Southern California Gas and reviewed by Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources staff are posted
on this page.
Annual Well Stimulation Treatment Report Available
annual report satisfies the legislative report requirements of Senate Bill 4 (Pavley, Chapter 313, Statutes of 2013) regarding well stimulation treatment. Part 1 of the report summarizes the objective and scope of this report. Part 2 provides a response to each legislative reporting requirement. The appendices provide references and sources of the data, as well as a glossary of terms used. During the reporting period, 579 well stimulation treatments were performed, all but one in western Kern County in relatively mature oil fields.