Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pa, Residents Sue Gas Driller for Contamination

Pa. Residents Sue Gas Driller for Contamination, Health Concerns
by Abrahm Lustgarten, ProPublica - November 20, 2009 10:00 am EST

Dimock resident Julie Sautner, seen here in her basement with her water filtration system, flushed her toilet one day to find a rush of earth-brown water. Tests showed her drinking water was high in aluminum, iron and methane. She is now part of a lawsuit against driller Cabot Oil and Gas. (Abrahm Lustgarten/ProPublica)Pennsylvania residents whose streams and fields have been damaged by toxic spills and whose drinking water has allegedly been contaminated [1] by drilling for natural gas are suing the Houston-based energy company that drilled the wells. A worker at the company is among the 15 families bringing suit.

The civil case, filed Thursday in U.S District Court in Scranton, Pa., seeks to stop future drilling in the Marcellus Shale by Cabot Oil and Gas near the town of Dimock. It also seeks to set up a trust fund to cover medical treatment for residents who say they have been sickened by pollutants. Health problems listed in the complaint include neurological and gastrointestinal illnesses; the complaint also alleges that at least one person's blood tests show toxic levels of the same metals found in the contaminated water. More>>>