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The Aliso Canyon gas and oil field as seen from Mission Point. (Image: Roy Randall via Flickr)

Governor extends halt on natural gas site near LA after leak

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill requiring one of the nation’s largest natural gas storage fields to remain shut down while it deals with the fallout from a four-month gas leak.

The new law signed Tuesday requires Southern California Gas Company to test the safety of its 114 wells in Aliso Canyon before they can again be used for storage.

SB380 continues Brown’s January moratorium on the natural gas site that fuels electric plants outside of Los Angeles.

Lawmakers, including supporters of the bill, have repeatedly raised concerns that prolonging the moratorium could cause power outages.

The leak was first detected on Oct. 23 and sealed in mid-February. It uprooted 6,400 families from the San Fernando Valley.

SoCalGas supported the bill. It hopes to restart operations by late summer.

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