Appeals court lifts stay on opening California gas facility

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A California Court of Appeal has lifted its temporary stay that prevented Southern California Gas Co. from resuming operations at its Aliso Canyon storage facility in Los Angeles.

The decision Saturday night clears the way for the utility to begin pumping gas into underground storage wells. Eighteen months ago a major blowout spewed methane that drove thousands of families from their homes.

SoCalGas spokesman Chris Gilbride said, “We have met_and in many cases, exceeded_the rigorous requirements of the State’s safety review.”

The same court late Friday temporarily blocked the facility’s reopening after Los Angeles County lawyers unsuccessfully tried to get a lower court to stop the utility from resuming operations at Aliso Canyon.

The county has said the state’s review didn’t adequately address the threat of earthquakes in the Santa Susana Mountains where the storage field is located..

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