Action in Los Angeles at the Murphy Drill Site

Partnering with STAND LA for Community Safety

Los Angeles is the largest urban oil field in the country. The city has numerous oil wells and refineries that are located in neighborhoods where millions of people live, work, worship, and play. These oil and gas drilling activities have a negative impact on the health of many, and they are intentionally and disproportionately located in Black and brown neighborhoods.

To fight back against the oil and gas drilling that is occurring in neighborhoods, a coalition was formed named Stand Together Against Neighborhood Drilling (STAND LA). The coalition is made up of community and faith groups who have been tirelessly working to protect the health and well-being of frontline communities.

One of the campaigns by STAND LA is the ongoing efforts to get the city of Los Angeles to put protections on the Murphy Drill Site. The site is located within half a mile of 16,000 people, including multiple schools, care facilities, and houses of worship.

GreenFaith partnered with STAND LA to hold a teach-in on January 14, 2023, to build community power and share about the dangers of neighborhood oil and gas drilling. The teach-in was held on a street in front of the Murphy Drill Site and was attended by over 70 people despite the pouring rain. The event was an opportunity for frontline communities to connect with faith communities and organizations, families, and young adults. We heard stories from nearby residents, researchers, and scientists about the number of safety violations and health impacts at the drill site.

I’m so grateful to have been one of many who helped organize the teach-in and was overwhelmed by the response.

STAND LA and its partners have been doing incredible work to protect frontline communities from the dangers of neighborhood oil and gas drilling. The teach-in held in January was an opportunity to build community, educate people of faith, and show frontline solidarity. The fight is far from over, but with continued partnerships and collaborations, there is hope for a future where frontline communities can live free from the negative impacts of oil and gas drilling.

Learn more about STAND LA and support Frontline Communities across the country by joining GreenFaith and our work with the People vs. Fossil Fuels Coalition.

William Morris is a Faith Organizer with GreenFaith US and also chairs Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA). He holds his degree in environmental science with an emphasis on ecological restoration from Humboldt State University. He spends his time engaging with faith communities, schools, universities, and organizations around the topics of faith-based climate justice and education. His work has been featured in Rolling Stone Magazine, BBC & ABC News.

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