Beverly Hills has officially become the first municipality in California to prohibit fracking–the controversial technique used to extract natural gas and oil from underground rock deposits–following a unanimous vote by the Beverly Hills city council on Tuesday, according to Reuters.
The unanimous vote by the Beverly Hills City Council gave final approval to the fracking ban, which will take effect on June 6 of this year. Beverly Hills City Spokeswoman Therese Kosterman told Reuters that “industrial processes such as mining and oil drilling really is not appropriate in Beverly Hills.”
Opponents of the ban include Dave Quast, the California director of “Energy in Depth,” a research and education program of the California Independent Petroleum Association, who said that banning fracking threatens the state’s energy independence as it would create “a greater reliance on expensive imported fuel sources would put Southern California jobs at risk and could result in higher prices at the pump.”
Fracking has been linked to earthquakes by some Los Angeles city council members. While no other community in the state has officially banned fracking, Los Angeles officials are exploring a possible moratorium on the controversial process. New York State has already instituted a moratorium and Illinois, last year, adopted a strict set of regulations on the practice.
California was once home to a thriving fossil fuel industry, a fact highlighted by the popular sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies, which ran on CBS from 1962 to 1971 and was later reprised in a Hollywood film.