The Office of Petroleum and Natural Gas Administration and Safety was established in 2016 within the Board of Public Works (Board) through a transfer of the function from the Office of City Administrative Officer (CAO) in the Adopted Budget. Several City departments including City Planning, Bureau of Sanitation, Transportation, Building and Safety, Fire, and Bureau of Engineering have traditionally performed Petroleum and Natural Gas administration activities, while the role of a Petroleum Administrator was housed within the CAO. In accordance with Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) Division 19, Chapter 4, Article 1, Sections 19.48 through 19.50 on Petroleum Administration and Sections 19.53 through 19.71 on Petroleum Leasing, the CAO is charged with managing petroleum matters for the City. However, as a result of the technical and intermittent nature of the work, it was difficult for the CAO to staff one employee on a full time basis. After elaborate discussions and deliberation, Council adopted a CLA/CAO report recommending that many P/NG related functions be consolidated under a new office within the Board which is headed by the Petroleum Administrator. The new Petroleum Administrator would have a more expanded role to oversee an office which performs the duties currently delineated in the LAAC, manage drilling leases, and assume duties related to the City’s franchise agreements previously administered by the Department of Transportation.
Erica Blyther has been the Petroleum Administrator for the City of Los Angeles since 2021. Ms. Blyther is professional with over 21 years of public sector environmental experience. Ms. Blyther serves as the City’s representative on the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s AB 617 Community Steering Committee for Wilmington/Carson/West Long Beach and on the Baldwin Hills Community Standards District’s Advisory Panel for the Inglewood Oil Field. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and Policy from Duke University and her Master of Science in Environmental and Occupational Health from California State University, Northridge.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
EPA’s mission is to protect human health and the environment.
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s Office of Pipeline Safety (PHMSA)
PHMSA's mission is to protect people and the environment by advancing the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials that are essential to our daily lives. To do this, the agency establishes national policy, sets and enforces standards, educates, and conducts research to prevent incidents. We also prepare the public and first responders to reduce consequences if an incident does occur.
California Public Utility Commission (CPUC)
The California Public Utilities Commission regulates investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities operating in California.
California Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR)
The Division oversees the drilling, operation, maintenance, and plugging and abandonment of oil, natural gas, and geothermal wells. The regulatory program emphasizes the wise development of oil, natural gas, and geothermal resources in the state through sound engineering practices that protect the environment, prevent pollution, and ensure public safety.
Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM)
The mission of the State Fire Marshal is to protect life and property through the development and application of fire prevention engineering, education and enforcement.
South Coast Air Quality Management Division (SCAQMD)
SCAQMD is the air pollution control agency for all of Orange County and the urban portions of Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, among the smoggiest regions of the U.S. We are committed to protecting the health of residents, while remaining sensitive to businesses.
When pipelines need to cross government lands, state and local governments can negotiate terms of the easement or franchise agreement relating to pipeline locations, availability of information, required payment by operators for line relocation in case of street or highway construction or rerouting projects, maintenance of the right-of-way, pipeline abandonment, and many other issues. Local governments can require permit applications and bonding at the time of construction to ensure the work is done according to requirements. Performance bonds are typically included, and intended to ensure the operator’s obligations under the agreement. Many local governments also charge an annual fee for use of the land as part of the franchise or easement agreement.