'Cabot Oil & Gas, a petroleum, natural gas and natural gas liquids exploration and production company based in Houston, Texas, has filed a $5 million lawsuit against water pollution victim Ray Kemble and his lawyers for speaking out about his polluted water well.
Kemble, who lives in Dimock, Pennsylvania, a tiny town in the rural northeast corner of the state whose aquifer was famously polluted by gas extraction, hasn't had clean water since Cabot started hydraulically fracturing, or fracking, near his home eight years ago. The town’s fracking-related pollution was featured in the HBO films Gasland and Gasland II.
In addition to the stress of living with a contaminated water well, Kemble is now being sued by the same company that polluted his water in the first place. Cabot is arguing that he has defamed its business by speaking publicly about the pollution in his well. At the first hearing in the case in early December, Judge Jason Legg called Cabot's $5 million damage claim improper, noting that such a large number is used only to gain attention and possibly biased media coverage.
"Cabot is substantially offering this basically as a marketing exercise because they want to have their version of the story out in the media." said one of Kemble's attorneys, Rich Raider. "Specifically, when they offered the pleadings to the Washington Post before they served them, which may not weigh in court, but tells you what their motive is."'
Read more: A Fracking Company Is Suing a Victim of Its Own Pollution for Speaking Out
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