California Governor Gavin Newsom on Thursday unveiled a plan to ban new permitting of oil wells within 3,200 feet (975 meters) of communities, calling it a move that will both protect public health and further the state’s goals to combat climate change. The move is a win for state environmental justice advocates that have long lobbied for stricter regulations around installing oil and gas operations near places where people live. Studies have linked communities’ proximity to oil and gas developments with higher rates of asthma, birth defects and heart disease, state officials said. If finalized, the rules would be the most stringent of any state in the nation, topping Colorado’s 2,000-foot (610-meter)setback requirement approved last year. The proposal would not close existing operations but would impose new pollution controls on wells currently within 3,200 feet (975 meters) of homes, schools, hospitals and other […]