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California

Land ownership

Natural resource extraction varies widely from state to state. In California, extractive industries accounted for <1% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2015.

California leads the nation in production of:

  • Geothermal: 74% of U.S. production
  • Solar: 59% of U.S. production
  • Other biomass: 13% of U.S. production

Natural resource ownership in the U.S. is closely tied to land ownership. Land can be owned by citizens, corporations, Indian tribes or individuals, or governments (for instance, federal, state, or local governments). Many USEITI datasets only cover natural resource extraction on federal land, which represents 45.8% of all land in California.

California also borders an offshore area with significant natural resource extraction, which may contribute to the state’s economy. For production and revenue data about offshore extraction near California, see the Pacific Ocean.

For a detailed view of how oil extraction affects communities in southern California, read the Kern County case study.

Production

Energy production: The U.S. Energy Information Administration publishes a profile of energy production and usage in California.

California ranks among the top five states in the U.S. for production of:

  • Geothermal: #1 in the nation (74% of U.S. production)
  • Solar: #1 in the nation (59% of U.S. production)
  • Other biomass: #1 in the nation (13% of U.S. production)
  • Wood-derived fuel: #2 in the nation (8% of U.S. production)
  • Crude oil: #3 in the nation (5% of U.S. production)
  • Wind: #4 in the nation (6% of U.S. production)
  • Hydroelectric: #4 in the nation (5% of U.S. production)

Nonenergy minerals: The U.S. Geological Survey publishes information about nonenergy mineral extraction in the USGS Minerals Yearbook for California.

The Energy Information Administration collects data about all energy-related natural resources produced on federal, state, and privately owned land.
Data and documentation

Hydroelectric

28,944,515 megawatt hours of hydroelectric energy were produced in California in 2016.

Crude oil

187,565,000 barrels of crude oil were produced in California in 2016.

Geothermal

12,468,848 megawatt hours of geothermal energy were produced in California in 2016.

Natural gas

211,451,000 mcf of natural gas were produced in California in 2016.

Other biomass

2,889,527 megawatt hours of other biomass energy were produced in California in 2016.

Solar

19,030,397 megawatt hours of solar energy were produced in California in 2016.

Wind

13,698,108 megawatt hours of wind energy were produced in California in 2016.

Wood-derived fuel

3,176,398 megawatt hours of wood-derived fuel energy were produced in California in 2016.

The Office of Natural Resources Revenue collects detailed data about natural resource production on federal land in California.
Data and documentation

Gas

14,548,806 mcf of gas were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Contra Costa County Fresno County Glenn County Kern County Kings County Los Angeles County Monterey County Sacramento County San Benito County San Joaquin County San Luis Obipso County Santa Barbara County Solano County Tehama County Ventura County Contra Costa County Fresno County Glenn County Kern County Kings County Los Angeles County Monterey County Sacramento County San Benito County San Joaquin County San Luis Obipso County Santa Barbara County Solano County Tehama County Ventura County
County production of gas in 2015 (mcf)

Geothermal

170,924 million BTUs of geothermal energy were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Lassen County Lassen County
County production of geothermal energy in 2015 (MMBTUs)

Geothermal

796,638,247 kilowatt hours of geothermal energy were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Imperial County Inyo County Mono County Imperial County Inyo County Mono County
County production of geothermal energy in 2015 (kWh)

Geothermal

666,434 units of geothermal energy were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Imperial County Lassen County Imperial County Lassen County
County production of geothermal energy in 2015 (units)

Geothermal

42,671,633 thousand pounds of geothermal energy were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Lake County Sonoma County Lake County Sonoma County
County production of geothermal energy in 2015 (klb)

Geothermal

2,401 sulfur of geothermal energy were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Inyo County Inyo County
County production of geothermal energy in 2015 (sulfur)

Oil

13,226,438 barrels of oil were produced on federal land in California in 2015.

County production

Contra Costa County Fresno County Kern County Kings County Los Angeles County Monterey County Sacramento County San Benito County San Luis Obipso County Santa Barbara County Solano County Ventura County Contra Costa County Fresno County Kern County Kings County Los Angeles County Monterey County Sacramento County San Benito County San Luis Obipso County Santa Barbara County Solano County Ventura County
County production of oil in 2015 (bbl)

Data withheld

Production volume in California was withheld for the following product(s):

  • Salt (’06–’15)
  • Soda Ash (’06–’15)
  • Sodium Bi-Carbonate (’06–’15)

Revenue

Companies pay a wide range of fees, rates, and taxes to extract natural resources in the United States. What companies pay to federal, state, and local governments often depends on who owns the natural resources.

Natural resource extraction can lead to federal revenue in two ways: non-tax revenue and tax revenue. Most USEITI data is about non-tax revenue from extractive industry activities on federal land.
Data and documentation

Revenue from production on federal land by resource

When companies extract natural resources on federal lands and waters, they pay royalties, rents, bonuses, and other fees, much like they would to any landowner. This non-tax revenue is collected and reported by the Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR).

For details about the laws and policies that govern how rights are awarded to companies and what they pay to extract natural resources on federal land: coal, oil and gas, renewable resources, and hardrock minerals.

The federal government collects different kinds of fees at each phase of natural resource extraction. This chart shows how much federal revenue was collected in 2016 for production or potential production of natural resources on federal land in California, broken down by phase of production.

Commodity 1. Securing rights 2. Before production 3. During production Other revenue
Oil and Gas
Oil & Gas
$46,002,763
$0 $160,455 Oil
$44,023,454
Gas
$1,200,759
NGL
$364,448
$253,647
Geothermal
Geothermal
$7,897,293
$0 $86,812 $7,773,772 $36,708
Other products
Sodium
$9,920,175
$0 $49 $9,922,697 ($2,571)
Sulfur
$113
$0 $0 $113 $0
Hardrock minerals
$42
$0 $42 $0 $0
All commodities
All commodities
$63,820,386
$0 $247,358 $63,285,243 $287,784

Most non-tax revenue collected by ONRR comes from counties with significant natural resources on federal land.
Data and documentation

All commodities

Companies paid $63,820,386 to produce natural resources on federal land in California in 2016.

Revenue collected by County

Colusa Contra Costa Fresno Glenn Imperial Inyo Kern Kings Lake Lassen Los Angeles Mendocino Merced Mono Monterey Riverside Sacramento San Benito San Bernardn San Diego San Joaquin San Luis Ob. Santa Barbar Siskiyou Solano Sonoma Sutter Trinity Ventura Yolo Colusa Contra Costa Fresno Glenn Imperial Inyo Kern Kings Lake Lassen Los Angeles Mendocino Merced Mono Monterey Riverside Sacramento San Benito San Bernardn San Diego San Joaquin San Luis Ob. Santa Barbar Siskiyou Solano Sonoma Sutter Trinity Ventura Yolo
County revenue in 2016

Federal tax revenue

Individuals and corporations (specifically C-corporations) pay income taxes to the IRS. Depending on company income, federal corporate income tax rates can range from 15–35%. Public policy provisions, such as tax expenditures, can decrease corporate income tax and other revenue payments in order to romote other policy goals.

Learn more about revenue from extraction on all lands and waters.

We don’t have detailed data about federal, state, or local revenue from natural resource extraction on land owned by California, corporations, or individuals. However, companies generally must pay state and local taxes.

Disbursements

After collecting revenue from natural resource extraction, the Office of Natural Resources Revenue distributes that money to different agencies, funds, and local governments for public use. This process is called “disbursement.”

Most federal revenue disbursements go into national funds. For detailed data about which expenditures and projects from those national funds are in California, see nationwide federal disbursements.

ONRR also disburses some revenue from natural resource extraction to state governments. In 2016, ONRR disbursed $38,841,434 to California. This included revenues from both onshore and offshore extraction in or near California:

  • $37,193,392 was from onshore revenues
  • $1,648,042 was from offshore revenues

Data and documentation

We don’t have detailed data about how states or local governments distribute revenue from natural resource extraction.

Economic impact

USEITI economic impact data covers gross domestic product and two different types of jobs data.

To learn more about direct energy employment across all sectors of the U.S. economy, another useful resource is 2017 U.S. Energy and Employment Report from the Department of Energy. This report has a separate state-by-state analysis of energy employment.

Data about each state’s gross domestic product comes from the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Data and documentation

GDP (dollars)

In 2015, extractive industries accounted for <1% of California’s GDP, or $11,471,000,000

Employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics describes the number of people who receive wages or salaries from companies.
Data and documentation

Extractive industry jobs

In 2016, there were jobs in the extractive industries in California, and they accounted for <1% of statewide employment.

Extractive industry jobs by county

Alameda County Amador County Butte County Contra Costa County El Dorado County Fresno County Glenn County Humboldt County Imperial County Inyo County Kern County Lake County Los Angeles County Marin County Mendocino County Monterey County Napa County Nevada County Orange County Placer County Plumas County Riverside County Sacramento County San Benito County San Bernardino County San Diego County San Francisco County San Joaquin County San Luis Obispo County San Mateo County Santa Barbara County Santa Clara County Shasta County Sierra County Solano County Sonoma County Sutter County Tulare County Tuolumne County Ventura County Yolo County Yuba County Alameda County Amador County Butte County Contra Costa County El Dorado County Fresno County Glenn County Humboldt County Imperial County Inyo County Kern County Lake County Los Angeles County Marin County Mendocino County Monterey County Napa County Nevada County Orange County Placer County Plumas County Riverside County Sacramento County San Benito County San Bernardino County San Diego County San Francisco County San Joaquin County San Luis Obispo County San Mateo County Santa Barbara County Santa Clara County Shasta County Sierra County Solano County Sonoma County Sutter County Tulare County Tuolumne County Ventura County Yolo County Yuba County
County employment in extractive industries (jobs, 2016)

Wage and salary jobs by commodity

Jobs are categorized according to the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). To learn more about how we grouped those categories, see data and documentation.

Geothermal, hydroelectric, solar, and wind energy categories are limited to jobs directly related to electrical energy generation. To learn more about all energy-related employment, see the 2017 U.S. Energy and Employment Report from the Department of Energy.

oil and gas

In 2016, there were 16,697 oil and gas jobs in California.

nonenergy mineral

In 2016, there were 4,588 nonenergy mineral jobs in California.

hydroelectric energy

In 2016, there were 1,430 hydroelectric energy jobs in California.

solar energy

In 2016, there were 832 solar energy jobs in California.

geothermal energy

In 2016, there were 820 geothermal energy jobs in California.

wind energy

In 2016, there were 564 wind energy jobs in California.

coal

In 2016, there were coal jobs in California.

Self-employment data, from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, describes people who work in natural resource extraction, but don’t receive wages or salaries because they own their own companies.
Data and documentation

Self-employment

In 2015, there were self-employed people working in the extractive industries in California.

The U.S. Census Bureau collects information about the top 25 exports in each state. In 2015, one or more natural resources ranked among the top 25 exports from California.
Data and documentation

Oil

$3,104,420,000 worth of oil was exported from California in 2015.

State governance

The USEITI Multi-Stakeholder Group identified California as a priority state and gathered additional information about state agencies and regulations that govern natural resource extraction in California: