Environment & Science

Porter Ranch: Secretary of Energy visits site of gas leak, discusses future regulations

File: U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz speaks as he takes part in a press conference at the end of the 2015 meeting of the International Energy Agency Governing Board at Ministerial level chaired by Moniz on Nov. 18, 2015 at the OECD headquarters in Paris.
File: U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz speaks as he takes part in a press conference at the end of the 2015 meeting of the International Energy Agency Governing Board at Ministerial level chaired by Moniz on Nov. 18, 2015 at the OECD headquarters in Paris.
Eric Piermont/AFP/Getty Images

U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz visited the Southern California Gas Company storage facility in Aliso Canyon on Tuesday where a 16-week natural gas leak originated, according to the Associated Press.

Along with L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti and representatives from local, state and federal agencies, Moniz was part of a round table discussion on moving forward from the gas leak in a way that ensures new preventative regulations are made.

Moniz said at a press conference that several themes emerged from the discussion. 

"Frankly, gas storage fields need a fresh look in terms of some of the regulatory requirements. That was clearly brought home here," Moniz said.

He also said that there is a bigger theme across the energy industry of old infrastructure that needs to be updated to be "smarter and more resilient." 

Garcetti also spoke at the press conference and emphasized the need for residents to feel confident that homes affected by the leak are safe to return to.

"Nobody should have to come home before it's safe, and before we know it's safe," Garcetti said.

Rep. Brad Sherman, who lives in Porter Ranch, said at the press conference that the costs resulting from the gas leak should not be passed on to customers. He also suggested that there be an infrared camera on every well in Aliso Canyon, as well as a gauge that measures mercaptans and methane levels that is available online 24/7.