Judge: No proof New York natural gas well contaminated neighbors' drinking water wells

IndustriesAssociated Press

A federal judge has ruled against nine southern New York homeowners who claimed their drinking water was contaminated by a nearby natural gas well drilled by Denver-based Anschutz Exploration Corp.

U.S. District Judge Charles Siragusa in Rochester decided the homeowners had failed to prove the silt and methane that befouled their wells was caused by the gas well drilled a half mile from their homes in 2010. The decision was filed on Dec. 17.

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Bonnie Todd of Horseheads, one of the homeowners, says Monday she was unaware a decision had been made. New York City personal injury law firm Napoli Bern Ripka Shkolnik, which represented the homeowners, didn't immediately return a call seeking comment.

The well drilled in the Trenton Black River sandstone formation wasn't hydraulically fractured, or fracked.