WV Landowner Sues 3 Companies for Methane Contamination of Water

A landowner in Marshall County, West Virginia had previously sued Chesapeake Energy, claiming Chesapeake’s nearby drilling and fracking operations (from 2009/2010) caused methane to migrate and contaminate his water well. Chesapeake sampled the well and found the kind of methane in the well (the “fingerprint” for the methane) does not match the methane from their drilled natural gas well.

The story then gets complicated. It seems that CNX Gas, a division of CONSOL Energy, had previously drilled a number of shallow natural gas wells in the area, and that Columbia Gas, a division of NiSource, has an underground natural gas storage field adjacent to the landowner’s property. Oy vey. There’s no shortage of possibilities for how the methane may have gotten into his well, and so now everyone is now getting sued…

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