The Norman Transcript

Headlines

December 20, 2013

Subsidiary agrees to settle case

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A Chesapeake Energy subsidiary has agreed to nearly $10 million in fines and restoration work to settle federal allegations over unauthorized discharges of fill material at more than two dozen natural gas extraction sites in West Virginia, federal officials announced Thursday.

Under the settlement announced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Justice, Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake’s subsidiary, Chesapeake Appalachia LLC, will pay a $3.2 million fine and spend $6.7 million on restoration work.

A Justice Department statement said the fine is one of the largest involving Clean Water Act provisions pertaining to the burial of streams and wetlands without permits.

The statement said the settlement resolves violations at sites in Boone, Kanawha, Lewis, Marshall, Mingo, Preston, Upshur and Wetzel counties.

“With this agreement, Chesapeake is taking important steps to comply with state and federal laws that are essential to protecting the integrity of the nation’s waters, wetlands and streams,” said Robert G. Dreher, acting assistant attorney general for environment and natural resources.

The allegations involved about 2.2 miles of streams and 3 acres of wetlands.

The case began through routine inspections and public tips and the company also disclosed potential violations following an internal audit.

The settlement requires the company to fully restore the wetlands and streams where feasible. It also must monitor the restored sites for up to 10 years to ensure the restoration’s success and implement a program for future compliance of federal and state law.

The agreement is subject to a 30-day public comment period and court approval.

Chesapeake Appalachia has oil and natural gas properties in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio.

In December 2012, Chesapeake Appalachia was fined $600,000 for destroying a Wetzel County waterfall while constructing a well pad. The company pleaded guilty to three violations of the federal Clean Water Act.

It was accused of illegally discharging 60 tons of crushed stone and gravel into Blake Fork at least three times in December 2008, then spreading that material to build a road.

Breaking news, severe weather alerts, AMBER alerts, sports scores from The Norman Transcript are available as text messages right to your phone or mobile device. You decide which type of alerts you want to receive. Find out more or to signup, click here.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Oklahoma City Memorial Bombing museum gets tech boost

    OKLAHOMA CITY — A memorial and museum built to remember the worst act of domestic terrorism on American soil is in the midst of a $7 million upgrade so it can better portray how different the world was when Timothy McVeigh blew up the ...

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Is Okla. backing off accountability?

    One by one, K-12 education reforms passed in previous years by Oklahoma lawmakers are being targeted for weakening or repeal....

    April 19, 2014

  • Hope Trunk travels to Norman

    The rustle of paper could be heard as students meticulously folded one crane, then another and another Friday afternoon. After reading the inspiring story, “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes,” Cleveland Elementary School fifth graders ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Congressman Cole reflects on recovery

    Congressman Tom Cole’s home in Moore was not hit by the May 20 tornado but it came pretty close. His wife has made it clear she wants a saferoom, he said. In a visit to the Transcript on Friday afternoon, Cole talked about tornado ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Gaylord to get $35,000 grant for poverty project

    A team from Gaylord College is among the first winners in a national competition to fund innovative news experiments that serve communities, the Online News Association has announced....

    April 19, 2014

  • U.S. puts off pipeline decision

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is putting off its decision on the Keystone XL oil pipeline, likely until after the November elections, by extending its review of the controversial project indefinitely....

    April 19, 2014

  • Garage sale to benefit Team Jamie’s Crew set

    A garage sale to benefit Team Jamie’s Crew will start at 9 a.m. today at 1510 Melrose Drive....

    April 19, 2014

  • Sonic plans expansion

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma-based Sonic Corp. plans to open 1,000 new drive-in restaurants nationwide over the next 10 years, expanding the chain by about 30 percent, the company said....

    April 19, 2014

  • Singing Sooners show set

    The University of Oklahoma School of Music presents the Singing Sooners Spring Show at 8 p.m. Friday, April 25 in the Sharp Concert Hall, Catlett Music Center. Jim Graves and Stephen Ziegler serve as directors for the group....

    April 19, 2014

  • Study: Half of jailed youths have injury

    NEW YORK — About half of all 16- to 18-year-olds coming into New York City’s jails say they had a traumatic brain injury before being incarcerated, most caused by assaults, according to a new study that’s the latest in a growing body of ...

    April 19, 2014