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Oil trade group sues state over fracking permit denials

Fracking (8)-52

In this 2015 file photo, trucks line a Chevron fracking pad in Lost Hills during a hydraulic fracturing operation there.

A leading oil-industry trade group has taken aim at Gov. Gavin Newsom's de-facto fracking ban with a lawsuit in Kern County Superior Court that mirrors accusations county government made in a complaint filed a month ago.

The 91-page lawsuit Western States Petroleum Association filed Friday repeats claims that the state's recent denial of fracking permit applications oversteps the administration's authority as laid out in the state Constitution. The suit alleges the state's move to block fracking contradicts the state's earlier findings on well stimulation treatments, and that under the state Public Resources Code the state is supposed to encourage oil production, not ban it.

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