Firm Seeks To Silence Fracking Pollution Concerns with Defamation Suit

September 11, 2014

The video of Steve Lipsky setting his drinking water on fire nearly went viral on You Tube. The fracking company he thinks caused the problem is suing him for defamation — an action sure to send a chill up the spine of anybody else who might dare to complain about fracking pollution.

Now that case is headed for the Texas Supreme Court. Oral arguments are scheduled for December 4. The case is a challenge to the ability of anyone — including news media — to disclose pollution. It is also a test of Texas' anti-SLAPP (strategic lawsuits against public participation) law.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had originally found that Range Resources fracking had polluted Lipsky's water — but withdrew its finding after the elected Texas Railroad Commission supported Range.

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