Dimock Trial Update: Judge Says Plaintiffs Didn’t Suffer Damage

The judge in the famous Dimock water contamination case has ruled that the plaintiffs have not proven any kind of damages, so he tossed out the negligence claim against Cabot Oil & Gas. That is, he just tossed out most of the remaining case! The only claim left now for the jury to decide, beginning today, is whether or not Cabot created a “nuisance” with their drilling activities. Translation: Cabot Oil & Gas did not, in any way, contaminate water wells in Dimock with their drilling activities. That is now proven in a court of law. Once again MDN friend Tom Shepstone, who has done a superb job of covering the trial, files this report about the judge tossing the last major charge against Cabot, and about more expert testimony that demolishes the plantiffs’ so-called expert witness Tony Ingraffea…
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Facebook Censors Dimock Trial Stories; Judge Tosses Part of Case

Radical environmentalists have a lot in common with Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler. They’re Fascists who brook no dissent from their twisted view of reality. Case in point: Phelim McAleer, the filmmaker who made the FrackNation documentary, has attended and covered the happenings at the Dimock trial for the past several weeks. We’ve carried most of Phelim’s reports here on MDN, including the hilarious way the plantiffs’ so-called expert, Dr. Tony Ingraffea, tried to avoid answering Phelim’s questions outside of the courthouse (see Dimock Trial: Ingraffea Day 2 – Hides Behind a Woman’s Coat). Being exposed as the frauds they are doesn’t sit well with radical environmentalists who have so much invested in the fiction of “water contamination” in Dimock. Phelim is one of the few (two, actually) outlets where we’re learning the truth about the Dimock trial. The news coming from the trial is so bad for the antis, mainstream media has a self-imposed news blackout on the trial–hoping the masses don’t notice it. Phelim has filed his reports on the FrackNation Facebook page. And herein lies the the ugly side of radical environmentalism. The anti-fracking movement began flooding Facebook with complaints about Phelim’s posts regarding the trial, and Facebook actually took down several posts, and locked down the FrackNation page on Facebook for 24 hours with a warning to cease and desist from posting new Dimock stories. Amazing! Someone tells THE TRUTH about a trial in Scranton, PA and Facebook censors it! Based on a hate campaign launched by radical environmentalists. The good news is that Facebook pulled its collective head out of its rear-end long enough to figure out this was a Fascist job by antis and they’ve now restored the FrackNation page and resurrected the deleted posts…
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Dimock Trial: Lighting Tap Water on Fire Decades Before Drilling

Last Thursday and Friday in the trial brought by two Dimock, PA families against Cabot Oil & Gas for supposedly contaminating their water wells with methane, Cabot launched into its defense since the plantiffs had rested their case. One of the first witnesses was Dr. Tarek Saba, a real scientist who actually has practical experience with oil and gas drilling and knows the details of the Dimock wells (unlike the plantiffs’ expert witness, Tony Ingraffea, who was destroyed under cross examination, see Dimock Trial: Ingraffea Day 2 – Hides Behind a Woman’s Coat). Dr. Saba’s testimony further debunked the fluff and BS (Barbara Streisand) coming from Tony Ingraffea. Not only that, but at the end of the day on Friday, Cabot called a local Dimock resident who spoke about lighting her water on fire just like they did in Gasland–decades before there was any natural gas drilling in the area. What a great witness!…
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Dimock Trial Update: Parents Use Their Kids to Rescue Case…Fail

If you want to be a blithering idiot and spout your anti-fossil fuel garbage–do it all you want. But don’t abuse your own children by making them do it too. And if you want to try to shake down a company with deep pockets to line your own pocket–same thing. Go for it. It’s sleazy and slimy–but don’t involve your kids in your unethical schemes. That’s just what the Elys have done. In a bid to try and rescue a trial that in all likelihood is about to be dismissed for lack of evidence, plantiffs Scott and Monica Ely had their lawyer put their own children, ages 10-13, on the witness stand. Who would do that to their own children? Even when the plantiffs’ lawyer, the inept Leslie Lewis, asked leading questions in an attempt to tug at the jury’s heartstrings, the entire effort was a bust. The Elys and Huberts, suing Cabot Oil & Gas for allegedly contaminating their water in Dimock, PA, are about out of options. After resting their case, the judge told the plantiffs he has “grave concerns” about the case and lack of evidence. The judge is seriously considering dismissing the case before it reaches the jury…
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Dimock Trial: Ingraffea Day 2 – Hides Behind a Woman’s Coat

Yesterday we brought you first-hand reporting on Day 1 of testimony from so-called expert witness Dr. Anthony (Tony the Tiger) Ingraffea at the Dimock water trial (see Dimock Trial: Cornell Prof Tony Ingraffea Exposed as Fractivist). Both MDN friend Tom Shepstone and FrackNation filmmaker Phelim McAleer are attending the trial and filing superb reports. It’s a good thing they are there. The Democrat-controlled Scranton Times-Tribune–the “newspaper of record” in the very place where the trial is being held–has stopped reporting on the trial, because the news is just so bad for anti-drillers. It’s a total news blackout by mainstream media. But there is a TON of news coming from this trial, and none of it so interesting as the total destruction of Ingraffea under cross examination. He’s not only been exposed as a fractivist, he’s been exposed as knowing nothing about the Dimock water well case! The very case he’s supposed to know about–the very reason he is testifying as an “expert.” Below is a summary of day two of Ingraffea’s testimony, in which he admits to a huge list of things he doesn’t know. Also below, Phelim got his camera out and tried to interview Ingraffea outside the courthouse and Ingraffea, sounding like a baby muttering “He’s harassing me,” hid behind a woman’s coat and wouldn’t answer Phelim’s questions. It’s hysterical! You have to watch the video (below)…
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Dimock Trial: Cornell Prof Tony Ingraffea Exposed as Fractivist

MDN has written, forever, about fractivist professor from Cornell University Tony Ingraffea. We still recall the first time we heard “Tony the Tiger” in person nearly six years ago (see Cornell Hydraulic Fracturing Expert Headlines First Meeting of New York Residents Against Drilling (NYRAD) in Vestal, NY). We said this at the time: Dr. Ingraffea is an accomplished speaker. He is equal parts comedian and expert, and he knows how to “work a crowd.” Indeed. He has since retired from Cornell but has created a cottage industry for himself in bashing natural gas and shale energy. The dunderheaded lawyer representing the two families suing Cabot Oil & Gas for contaminating their water in Dimock, PA called Tony the Tiger to the witness stand, as an “expert witness.” At first he wowed the crowd and the jury. We told you, he’s a good speaker. He also claimed, under oath, he’s not a protester or fractivist (an outright lie–perjury in our opinion). Cabot’s lawyers proceeded to shred his credibility under cross examination. Turns out Tony has never been involved with drilling or fracking a single well. Ever. The only thing he does is sit his rear-end in front of a computer and make pretty pie charts and “analyze” data. Oh, and he attends anti-fracking rallies too–as he admitted under oath to the Cabot lawyer. So much for the “expert” witness who claims he’s just a scientist and not a radical anti-driller…
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Dimock Trial Update: Plaintiffs’ Expert Witness Exposed as Fracktivist

The hits just keep rollin’ in from the Dimock “Cabot polluted my water” trial being held in Scranton, PA. It’s more like a comedy show than a trial. We wonder if the plantiffs will sue their own attorney for gross incompetence when it’s all done. Here’s the latest from last Thursday/Friday. The plantiffs’ attorney put an “expert witness” on the stand, Paul Rubin. Cabot’s lawyers proceeded to shred his testimony to pieces and show him as an anti-drilling activist with an agenda. Read MDN friend Tom Shepstone’s summary below–it’s prime. Also late last week the plantiffs’ attorney, for the second time admitted in open court, stated that the trial is not about frack fluid getting into well water–but rather about methane migration. For years people like Josh Fox of Gasland fame have falsely claimed frack fluids were the source of contamination in Dimock. That old lie is, once and for all, now exposed. Not even the plantiffs make that claim. We’d say this trial has served a useful purpose: to expose the anti-fossil fuel agenda and its peddlers as being truth-challenged…
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Dimock Trial Update: Scott & Monica Ely’s Testimony Destroyed

There was a ton of news coming out of the trial two Dimock families have brought against Cabot Oil & Gas in Scranton, PA yesterday. But you wouldn’t know it if you read the Democrat-controlled (and anti-drilling) Scranton Times-Tribune–the newspaper of “record” in the very place where the trial is being held. They’ve quit writing about the trial because the news is so bad for anti-drillers. Both Scott and Monica Ely testified and under cross examination their testimony was obliterated–their claims exposed as lies. Here’s the latest from FrackNation filmmaker Phelim McAleer who has been following the trial from the beginning, and from Natural Gas Now
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Dimock Resident Scott Ely Takes the Stand in Lawsuit Against Cabot

Yesterday the lead Dimock plantiff in the lawsuit against Cabot Oil & Gas, Scott Ely, was on the witness stand to talk about how Cabot destroyed his water supply. Except when you read even biased news sources like PBS’ StateImpact Pennsylvania, it appears Ely didn’t do a lot of talking about his water but about his own tenure in working for Cabot. Ely attempted to smear Cabot’s reputation by making wild claims about the reckless nature of their operations. Of course Ely’s attorney hopes the jury will infer that if Cabot was reckless in other activities, they were likely reckless when they drilled near Ely’s home and caused his water to become contaminated with methane–a problem that is fixable (although Ely wouldn’t allow Cabot to fix it). In addition to Ely’s testimony, his attorney asked the judge, yet again, to allow 300 new pieces of “evidence” that she tried to slip in at the last minute, an ambush of Cabot’s attorneys. And once again the judge said “no” to her request…
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Guest Post: 7 Important Points to Know About Dimock Trial

By Phelim McAleer

The Ely and Hubert families of Dimock, Pennsylvania are suing Cabot Oil & Gas for allegedly polluting their water. The case is hugely significant because Dimock has been characterized as “Ground Zero” for water allegedly contaminated by fracking. It was featured in the documentaries Gasland 1 & 2 and has been the subject of national and international news reports. Countless celebrities have also pushed the lie that Dimock’s water was contaminated with fracking fluid. But the case has thrown serious doubts on the narrative being spun by activists. The plaintiffs’ case is looking very shaky, indeed. Here are seven key points that have emerged as the case enters its second day.
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Guest Post: Dimock Plaintiff Exposed Under Cross Examination

By Phelim McAleer

The Ely family in Dimock, Pennsylvania is suing an oil and gas company alleging they contaminated their water well through fracking. Dimock has become a focal point for anti-fracking activists with many calling it “Ground zero” for pollution. Dimock and the Ely’s have been featured in national and international news reports and documentaries. Celebrities such as Mark Ruffalo, Yoko Ono, and Susan Sarandon have visited the tiny community to sympathize. But yesterday in the first day of the trial, facts started to emerge that show the truth is much different from the previously reported stories. Questioned under oath, Scott Ely’s claims look a lot less certain and he looks a lot less credible. Below are five facts that emerged during the first day that expose serious problems with Ely’s claims that his water was contaminated by fracking.
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Dimock Lawyers Admit Frack Fluid Didn’t Contaminate Well Water

court-gavel.jpgYesterday saw opening arguments in the case of two Dimock, PA families who are suing Cabot Oil & Gas with a claim that Cabot’s drilling “contaminated” their well water supplies (see Dimock Trial Starts Today – 2 Families Try to Shake Down Cabot). MDN friend and top film documentary maker Phelim McAleer–creator of the excellent FrackNation documentary–noticed a very important admission by the attorneys for the plaintiffs. In their opening arguments, the attorneys for the landowners admit that there is “no scientific proof” that fracking fluid ever reached or contaminated the plaintiffs’ water wells. We’ve known that and have trumpeted that for years. This case has always been about methane (natural gas itself) “migrating” through the ground into the water wells as a result of Cabot’s drilling program. That’s what is at issue: Did Cabot’s drilling cause methane migration? But the general public, because of propaganda films like Gasland and Gasland II, believe fracking chemicals had somehow seeped into the water wells in Dimock. Not true–and now it’s on the record for all, including Josh Fox, to see. The stunning admission by the landowners’ own lawyers that fracking fluid did not contaminate the wells in Dimock totally refutes false claims by Fox and Hollywood stars like Mark Ruffalo who have tried to use Dimock as a rallying cry…
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Dimock Plantiffs Warned by Judge to Keep Their Yaps Shut

Borrowing an old Washington, DC inside joke about Chuck Schumer, the most dangerous place in Scranton, PA is standing between Dimock resident Scott Ely and a television camera. As we told you yesterday, two Dimock families finally made it to their day in court to accuse Cabot Oil & Gas of contaminating their water supplies (see Dimock Trial Starts Today – 2 Families Try to Shake Down Cabot). What was the first thing Scott Ely, one of the landowners, did? On a lunch break, Ely and the other plantiffs headed straight for the reporters to attempt to influence the jury pool with a storyline of being bullied by a big, mean corporation. After lunch, the judge warned the plaintiffs’ attorney that the plaintiffs were not to run their yaps outside of the courtroom…
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Dimock Trial Starts Today – 2 Families Try to Shake Down Cabot

Dimock, PA is the story that just doesn’t die. We thought the story of methane migration into nearby water wells in a small area of Dimock, PA (from Cabot Oil & Gas wells) had long since been put to bed. There were 14 families along the Carter Road area that reportedly experienced turbidity in their water from methane migrating from drilling operations nearby. The state Dept. of Environmental Protection investigated in 2010 and declared Cabot guilty and imposed some pretty stiff fines and requirements, including a requirement to install permanent water treatment systems at each home and even an offer to each of the families to pay twice what their property was worth at the time (see PA DEP Takes Aggressive Action Against Cabot Oil & Gas over Dimock Township Methane Contamination). We won’t recount all of the twists and turns we documented over the years, including research that showed Cabot wasn’t responsible for the methane migration. All of the properties either sold to Cabot or got their water systems repaired–except for two holdout families who are riding the horse of hope that they can sue Cabot for big money and retire millionaires. Of course the only people making money on the lawsuit are their lawyers–but that doesn’t seem to bother them. The final two holdouts in Dimock get their day in court beginning today. Except their lawyers sleazily tried to sneak in a bunch of “evidence” at the last minute–and the judge has ruled they can’t use it. In fact, the judge called the move a “sad and shocking spectacle.” No one can predict the court’s outcome for sure, but given what’s happened so far, it’s pretty easy to predict that Cabot will win this one and then the final chapter will be written in the long, sordid tale of how anti-drillers tried to demagogue the Dimock situation–and lost…
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Last Gasp in Dimock Couple’s Quest for Riches

Scott and Monica Ely, who once willing leased their land to Cabot Oil & Gas in Dimock, PA, then saw big bucks when their water turned cloudy, ostensibly from methane they say was the result of nearby shale drilling from Cabot, have won the right to have their “negligence” lawsuit against Cabot to continue. The single count of negligence is the only thing U.S. District Magistrate Judge Martin C. Carlson said could continue. All other claims made by the couple have been dismissed by Judge Carlson…
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Dimock is Back in the News – New LDC on the Way

Welcome to Dimock signDimock. That single word for many people evokes pictures of brown water in clear jars with claims that shale gas drilling “polluted the water in Dimock, PA.” Of course, it isn’t true. But that doesn’t stop good propagandists like Josh Fox from making money from peddling a lie (see Study Proves Fracking Didn’t Cause Methane in Dimock Water Wells). Now that Dimock is resolved and behind us, this little township in rural Susquehanna County is back in the news. Because of natural gas. But this time, Josh Fox certainly won’t make a movie out of it. Last week the PA Public Utility Commission (PUC) approved an application from Leatherstocking Gas (a local distribution company–or LDC) to run local natural gas pipelines to schools, homes and businesses in Dimock…
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