"Chesapeake Fined $3.2 Million for West Virginia Water Violations"

"U.S. federal regulators on Thursday said oil and gas company Chesapeake Energy Corp will pay a civil penalty of $3.2 million to settle Clean Water Act violations in West Virginia where it drills in the Marcellus Shale."

"Chesapeake will also pay an estimated $6.5 million to restore streams and wetlands. The U.S. oil and gas company allegedly dumped rocks, sand and dirt into wetlands while building drill sites and roads, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Justice.

Companies using hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling construct drilling pads for rigs by clearing land that is then covered by crushed rock. Roads also need to be built to accommodate truck traffic to and from drilling sites.

The $3.2 million penalty, one of the largest of its kind ever levied by the federal government, is for violations of the Clean Water Act (CWA), which prohibits the filling or damming of wetlands, rivers, streams, and other U.S. waters without a federal permit, the regulators said."

Anna Driver reports for Reuters December 20, 2013.

Source: Reuters, 12/20/2013