June 12, 2014

Kern County Residents Challenge Gov. Brown to Come See the Reality of Fracking in California

Press conference this Saturday will highlight fracking’s threat to California’s communities and climate

Shafter, CA — This Saturday, community members in Kern County, the heart of California’s fracking zone, are hosting a press conference to present over 50,000 signatures calling on Governor Jerry Brown to come to Kern, meet with them, and see the impacts of fracking first hand.

The petition is part of a growing effort to force Governor Brown to face the reality that fracking is wasting and poisoning California’s water, polluting the climate–in the midst of one of the state’s worst droughts in history–and endangering families, especially those in low-income and Latino communities already suffering from the worst air quality in the country.

Petition signatures were gathered by 350.org, Center for Biological Diversity, Center on Race Poverty and the Environment, Credo, Earthworks, Environment California, Food and Water Watch, Oil Change International.

What: Press Conference to present petition calling on Gov. Brown to visit Kern County and see the impacts of fracking first hand.

When: 10:00am, Saturday, June 14.

Where: Shafter Community Garden to the Left of Sequoia Elementary School, Shafter, Kern County, CA

Who: The press conference is being hosted by Kern County community members, in partnership with the Center on Race Poverty & the Environment (CRPE) and 350.org. Speakers will include:

    • Anabel Marquez: A valley resident for the past 7 years, mother, active member of the local anti-fracking committee and co-director of the local community garden in Shafter.
    • Rodrigo Romo: A valley resident for the past 14 years, father, active member of the a local organization in his community named “Committee for a Better Shafter,” and Co-Director of their local community garden.
    • Lupe Martinez: Assistant Director of CRPE, who has strong ties to the San Joaquin Valley, specifically Kern County, and years of experience in developing community leaders through community organizing and training. Martinez worked alongside Cesar Chavez for years with the United Farm Workers as an organizer, Regional Director, National Organizing Director, and Vice-President.
    • Linda Capato: 350.org Fracking Campaign Coordinator, is leading 350.org’s growing campaign against fracking in California. 350.org has spearheaded the fight against the Keystone XL pipeline and works with communities across the country to block dirty energy projects.

350.org and CRPE recently produced this video of Kern community members calling on Gov. Brown to visit the county. The video has received thousands of views and was recently featured on the online news site, Upworthy.