Thursday, December 16, 2010

Tainted Water

An oil and gas company has settled with the DEP after contaminating wells in Northeast Pennsylvania.

Nineteen families whose water became tainted through Marcellus Shale gas drilling will receive a settlement totally $4.1 million dollars, the Department of Environmental Protection announced on Thursday.

The DEP has had an ongoing dispute with Cabot Oil and Gas Corporation over the wells, drilled in a rural area in Susquehanna County. The DEP says the water there became contaminated because of the manner in which the company dug the gas wells.

John Hanger, Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection says this is not the first problem they’ve had with this company.

“This is another fine in a long series of fines that we’ve required Cabot to pay for the damage that they’ve caused. We’ve also previously required Cabot to plug some gas wells and also repair some other gas wells and we will also continue to oversee Cabot to see that this type of operation don’t cause this type of problem,” he said.

Each family will receive an amount equal to the twice the value of their home, with a minimum payment of $50,000. Hanger says the affected families have been using bottled water for 2 years. Cabot will also provide water treatment systems to the families.

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