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Hollister Free Lance | May 15, 2014 | by Hollister Freelance Editorial Board
A group’s attempt to ban fracking and severely restrict all petroleum production in San Benito County is nothing more than extremist politics in an attempt to push the anti-fossil fuel agenda. That group, calling itself San Benito Rising, is using hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, as a smoke screen to tug at mainstream voters’ emotions and dilute any chance of a genuine debate. The organization’s members won’t admit it outright, because that would spoil their narrative, but they are pushing to effectively shut down all petroleum production in the county. It says so in the fine print of their petition – which would ban fracking but also prohibit petroleum activities “on all lands designated Rural, Rural Transitional, Rural Residential, Rural/Urban, and Sphere of Influence Rural/Urban, within the County’s unincorporated area.” That covers the vast majority of the unincorporated county, which is everything outside Hollister and San Juan Bautista, and all but kills any prospect for oil or gas development in an economically distraught community.
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