DEP Fines Chesapeake Energy for Contaminating Streams, Creeks

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has issued a $565,000 fine to gas driller Chesapeake Energy because of violations at three of the company’s sites last year, including a well blowout in Bradford County.

In all three of those instances, state officials said Chesapeake Energy contaminated streams and creeks.

In one of those cases, it took days for Chesapeake to get a blown-out gas well under control.

That was in April of last year near Troy in Bradford County.

Newswatch 16 spent days covering the blow-out that happened during Chesapeake’s fracking operation at a well pad in LeRoy Township.

Fluids from the well made their way into nearby Towanda Creek, according to the DEP.

It took Chesapeake two days to stop the flow from the well and four more days to get the well fully under control.

Along with paying nearly $200,000 in fines for the well blowout. Chesapeake must continue testing nearby drinking wells to make sure there was no impact from the blowout, said DEP.

DEP fined Chesapeake another $160,000 for a separate incident near Towanda back in 2010.

State officials said Chesapeake built a gas well pad partially on wetlands which contributed to contamination there.

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