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Friday, April 30, 2010

DEP Orders Cabot Oil & Gas Remove Hibbard Well Pad Reserve Pit

DEP Orders Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. to Remove Hibbard Well Pad Reserve Pit in Susquehanna County

Company Ignored DEP’s Prior Written, Verbal Requests

WILLIAMSPORT -- The Department of Environmental Protection today ordered Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. to close and remove an earthen pit in Susquehanna County that holds drilling fluids to determine whether it is contaminating nearby water resources.

The pit, known as a reserve pit, is located at the Hibbard well pad in Dimock Township. The company has 14 days to comply with the order.

DEP’s North-central Regional Director Robert Yowell said today’s more aggressive enforcement action was necessitated after the company ignored previous requests.

“DEP strongly advised Cabot to close and remove the reserve pit in an April 8 notice of violation letter and reiterated to Cabot’s senior management the same message a few short days ago,” said Yowell. “However, Cabot has not remedied the situation and its inaction demonstrates an arrogant disregard for Pennsylvania’s oil and gas regulations and proper protection of our environment.”

The department’s Oil and Gas Program staff responded to a report of black water in a ditch near the Hibbard well pad on March 22. The black water had impacted a private unused drinking water well, two springs and a wetland.

The water, soil and sediment sample results from DEP and Cabot’s contractor in the area, along with visible tears and holes in the reserve pit’s liner and local geology, led DEP to conclude that the black water is a mixture of groundwater and liquid waste from the reserve pit.

The DEP order also requires Cabot to submit a site characterization report plan to DEP within seven days; a letter describing the completion of the pit’s final closure and removal within 18 days; and a site characterization report with the results of its investigation and analysis within 45 days.

For more information, call 570-327-3659 or visit


Anonymous said...

But I thought drilling was safe?

Just imagine how many companies get away with this stuff for every one that gets busted.

Anonymous said...

Ah yes. Let's just put complete trust and faith in these scallowag drilling companies.


Anonymous said...

It seems Cabot is the company that dominates the headlines and is defiant of the DEP's rules and regulations.

There are a lot of drilling companies that are playing by the rules and are drilling safe.

You can't categorize an entire industry by the actions of one company. That is like saying everyone abuses drugs because one person gets caught.

By the way, how many of you folks that are complaining about drilling used natural gas to heat your house or business? I'll bet you didn't have any problems with the industry when it was keeping you warm.

Anonymous said...

Well 6:22 it seems you have forgotten about those of us who heat with wood.

The "industry" sure lobbied for those regulations.

In other words they'd love to force us all to use gas for heating.

Anonymous said...

8:59 poster, Potter County would look beautiful in the fall with a barren hillsides. According to your argument, we would all be better off with all the trees being cut so the world can heat with wood and put an increased amount of greenhouse gases in the air.

I have also not seen too many offices in my day that have a wood stove in the middle of them. I am still guessing you use natural gas somewhere in your life.

As far as the "industry" lobbying. This area is by far the most regulated of any of the natural gas plays in America.

There are companies that take the environment serious, you just don't read about the successes and environmental stewardship that takes place because the negative makes a better headline.

Anonymous said...

It doesn't matter whether 99 percent of the industry does drilling correctly. The stakes are to high and long term to have even 1 drilling company do things incorrectly. A convenient example is oil mess in the gulf now that will cost billions to clean up and which will impact the ecosystem for decades. And it hasn't hit shore yet. So it only takes one well driller to destroy a watershed and the drinking water and ecosystem that goes along with it.


Anonymous said...

Hey 6:45, you obviously missed the point.

First, trees are renewable. You make it sound like we have to cut them all down. Simply not true.

Furthermore, there are tons of environmentally friendly methods for producing heat, such as solar and wind power.

Anonymous said...

It takes hundreds of years for trees to grow. To heat the world like you seem to think we can with wood, would take literally every tree in the world. Can you imagine heating a NY City skyscraper with wood? Natural gas is the only alternative.

Solar and wind don't do the trick either. Do a bit of homework on solar and wind energy sources and you will see that this is a way to subsidize existing methods....not replace them.

Anonymous said...

Have you all forgotten nuclear power? Oh that's right, were all scared of what we don't understand.

Anonymous said...

Cabot seems to not play by the rules and not be responsible. They should have further permits rejected and maybe they will get the message.

Anonymous said...

5:36 the only reason that wind and solar energy is supplemental is because we've made it that way. Big oil is responsible for people believing otherwise.

You see, it's not that solar power is more costly than other methods of harnessing energy, what IS costly is leaving behind the oil infrastructure that corporations have invested blood and money into for decades.

The amount of energy that makes it to our planet in an hour is enough to power the world for over a year, and yet we only harness enough of that energy in the course of a year to heat London for one year.

Now, you say we would have to cut every tree in the world down for heat, this is simply not true.

Tell me, what did people do before natural gas? That's what I thought.

You can believe Big-Oil, or you can do your own research. You might be stunned at what you find out.

Anonymous said...

"The amount of solar energy reaching the surface of the planet is so vast that in one year it is about twice as much as will ever be obtained from all of the Earth's non-renewable resources of coal, oil, natural gas, and mined uranium combined."