Clearing the air: Council expresses concern over oil drilling proposal

Kimberly Rivers, Ojai Valley News correspondent

In a three-to-two vote Tuesday, the Ojai City Council elected to send a letter to the Ventura County Planning Commission expressing concern regarding inconsistencies between air emission rules in the Ojai Valley Area Plan (OVAP) and the Ventura County Air Quality Assessment Guidelines (AQAG). City Council’s concerns were raised during review of a proposed oil and gas project near Koenigstein Road in Upper Ojai.

The Agnew Lease project, put forward by Mirada Petroleum, asks to extend a Conditional Use Permit (C.U.P.) for 25 years, add three new wells, re-drill an existing well and allow the use of Koenigstein Road for tanker trucks removing oil and waste water from the site. The current permit prohibits the use of Koenigstein Road, which Mirada has been using since 1995 when the approved truck route was washed out in a flood.

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