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Thursday, September 24, 2009

DEP ISSUES VIOLATION NOTICE TO CABOT OIL AND GAS

CABOT OIL AND GAS Spill At Dimock

Company Must Properly Clean Up Susquehanna County Gel Spill

WILLIAMSPORT – The Department of Environmental Protection has issued a notice of violation to Cabot Oil and Gas for two liquid gel spills last week at the company’s Heitsman natural gas well pad in Dimock Township, Susquehanna County, which polluted a wetland and caused a fish kill in Stevens Creek.

“DEP is very concerned about spills at Cabot sites and will require Cabot to take all necessary actions to prevent them from recurring,” DEP Northcentral Regional Director Robert Yowell said.

The notice of violation cites Cabot for an unpermitted discharge of polluting substances, an unpermitted discharge of residual waste, two unpermitted encroachments on Stevens Creek, not containing polluting substances at the well site, and an unpermitted discharge of industrial waste.

These were violations of the Pennsylvania Clean Streams Law, Pennsylvania Solid Waste Management Act, the Dam Safety and Encroachments Act, and the Oil and Gas Act.

Cabot must provide a written response within 10 days explaining any additional steps that will be taken to correct the violations, and what steps are being taken to prevent their recurrence.

DEP may assess a civil penalty for the violations once the cleanup is finished.

The two spills last week totaled about 8,000 gallons and involved a liquid gel called LGC-35, which is mixed with water and serves as a lubricant in the well fracking process. About 4.9 gallons of LGC-35 are mixed with each 1,000 gallons of water. Cabot informed DEP that failed pipe connections caused both spills.

The wetland was flushed with water late last week to remove the gel, and the mixture was then pumped to on-site storage tanks. No remediation was required in Stevens Creek. Some soil excavation may be required, depending upon sample results.

Cabot reported a third spill to DEP at the same site on Sept. 22 when a closed valve caused an increase in pressure and a hose ruptured. About 420 gallons of the same gel/water mixture spilled, with all but 10 gallons recovered from a catch basin. The remaining fluid is being cleaned up by Cabot contractors.

DEP's investigation is continuing and additional actions are being evaluated.

4 comments :

Anonymous said...

guess what people these are only the spills you hear about...I promise you there fines are just a drop in the bucket..they will make millions for there work...I work in the field and I know what goes on, you can not imagine.

Anonymous said...

You know the real issue is that these companies are in to big of a hurry drilling and this is becoming careless. Its only gonna get worse.

Anonymous said...

Such incidents as the spill in Dimock are not an

anomaly they are common! The horizontal fracturing is

not being conducted safely and in an environmentally

sound manner.
They're going to take the gas, make a fortune and leave

God's country with an environmental mess.

Drilling companies do not have to,tell us what

chemicals they add to the fluids.They are exempt from

the Safe Drinking Water Act.
It is important that Congress pass the FRAC ACT, the

act that makes gas companies liable and responsible to

the damage they cause and to reveal the chemicals they

add to the fracturing fluids.
There are huge retention ponds in our area containing

millions of gallons of flowback/fracturing fluid.In

addition to the unknown chemicals in the retention

ponds,fracturing fluid has a high salinity content.
Surrounded by 4 ft fences they are easily accessible to

deer and other game that will probably end up on many

Potter County resident's dinner plates.

Anonymous said...

thats not the only thing it will get in your water supply just watch them when they clean-up the pits.