Water pollution suit rejected

Jan. 29, 2012 at 7:36 PM
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FORT WAYNE, Texas, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- A judge has thrown out a Texas couple's lawsuit accusing Fort Worth-based Range Resources of contaminating their water well with methane gas.

Judge Trey Loftin of the 43rd District Court in Weatherford ruled Friday that Steve and Shyla Lipsky did not have legal standing for their $6.5 million lawsuit against Range Resources, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

In his ruling, Loftin cited Texas Railroad Commission determined last year that two of the Range Resources natural gas wells were not responsible for contaminating the private water well.

The Railroad Commission investigation was prompted by an Environmental Protection Agency order against Range Resources on Dec. 7, 2010. The EPA contended two of Range Resources' gas wells "caused or contributed" to the methane contamination of the Lipskys' well and another one nearby.

Ultimately, the Railroad Commission found the methane contamination was due to natural causes.

"The gas companies own the Railroad Commission," Steve Lipsky said Saturday in response to the ruling. "They own the system ... . They know they got away with it, and they're laughing about it. ... God help us all."

The Lipskys did not indicate whether they would appeal.

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