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Cabot Oil & Gas Responds To Recent Statements, Actions By The Pennsylvania Department Of Environmental Protection
Sep 29, 2010

Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation (Cabot) today submitted a detailed letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PaDEP) outlining its position on numerous matters (including misrepresentations and factual inaccuracies) that the Department has made in its dealings with the Company. Through the letter, Cabot requests the PaDEP to review and consider the full breadth of evidence that clearly demonstrates Cabot is not responsible for methane gas migration into water wells in the Northeastern Pennsylvania region – a claim that the PaDEP has made against Cabot.

According to Dan O. Dinges, Chairman, President & CEO for Cabot, despite the fact that the company has presented overwhelming scientific evidence and historical documentation to the PaDEP proving it is not responsible for methane gas migration into local water wells, the PaDEP has chosen to ignore such evidence, preferring instead to base unprecedented and costly mandates on biased and unscientific opinions and accounts.

"We remain committed to safe, compliant operations in the Northeastern Pennsylvania region, but refuse to remain silent as the PaDEP wages a public war against us," said Dinges. "We have gone above and beyond in our role as a good corporate neighbor, and it is disappointing that the PaDEP has chosen to ignore compelling evidence that clearly proves Cabot’s operations are safe, while at the same time publicly demanding a costly, unnecessary solution for water delivery and threatening suit if we did not comply."

Among other things, the letter:

  • Reaffirms the fact that Cabot’s operations are safe and environmentally responsible.
  • Points out the fact that Cabot has successfully drilled a local water well for a resident who lives in a Northeastern Pennsylvania area in which Cabot operates.
  • Challenges the PaDEP’s arbitrary and unreasonable behavior toward Cabot.
  • Identifies and protests the PaDEP’s public accusations against Cabot.
  • Makes public for the first time the fact that emergency response officials’ investigation found that claims of an alleged well explosion and fire at local residence January 1, 2009 are false and that such an explosion never occurred.
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    Dinges added, "Like all operators, the Company has at times experienced notice of violations (NOV), but has remediated all of those outside those covered by the Modified Consent Orders with no ongoing environmental or safety impacts." Since commencing operations in Susquehanna County in 2006 – more than a century after the first historical reports of methane-infused drinking water in the region – Cabot has invested more than $500 million through 2009 and expects that figure to nearly double by the end of 2010. The Company has also created more than 300 full-time jobs through company staff additions, and those of its vendors and suppliers. The company strives for best practices to comply with environmental and oil and gas drilling regulations, and continues to implement measures to achieve its goal of zero incidents.