California lawmakers blocked two big environmental bills Thursday: One that would have ramped up the state’s emissions targets, and another that would have made oil companies liable for the health problems of people who live close to oil wells.
They are among the hundreds of bills that did not survive the Legislature’s suspense file, a mysterious process where lawmakers decide — with no explanation — which bills will get a chance to become law later this year and which ones should not move forward.
Last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a law that bans drilling new oil wells within 3,200 feet (975 meters) of sensitive areas like homes and schools. But the law hasn’t taken effect because the oil industry qualified a referendum on the 2024 ballot asking voters to overturn it.