Citing a potential loss of "millions of dollars," Marcellus and Utica shale driller Gulfport Energy is suing the village of Barnesville for the right to draw water from the Slope Creek Reservoir for its nearby fracking operations.
Filed earlier this month in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Gulfport's lawsuit claims the Oklahoma City-based firm should be allowed to take water from the reservoir, located about five miles south of the village, unless the "health and safety of area residents and businesses are impaired."
"Barnesville has frustrated Gulfport's right to develop minerals under the mineral rights agreement by refusing to provide Gulfport with water in violation of Gulfport's water rights," company attorney O. Judson Scheaf states in his complaint. "Barnesville has wrongfully maintained that Gulfport's water rights are limited by the 2014 water use agreement between Barnesville and Antero" Resources.
Court documents show that on Aug. 17, 2012, Barnesville officials signed an agreement permitting Gulfport to buy water from the Slope Creek Reservoir at a price of one cent per gallon. The contract shows the firm would be able to draw the water until a point when the village would determine such action would endanger public health.Click here to read more on this story.
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