Colorado Landowner Sues Tulsa-Based Williams Over Drilling Waste

Tuesday, July 6th 2010, 11:46 am
By: News On 6

RULISON, CO -- A western Colorado landowner is suing Tulsa-based Williams contending the energy company violated a surface use agreement with her and caused damage to her property.

Rulison resident Marion Wells says in the lawsuit, Williams failed to comply with a requirement to remove construction materials and drilling waste.

The lawsuit also says Williams didn't do required reclamation, failed to pay her as agreed for surface damages for that part of a pipeline that was built outside a right of way, and released water from a drilling pad, resulting in mud and rock falling onto her property, causing, among other things, a broken waterline.

Colorado newspaper reports say Wells has been a frequent critic of the energy industry, including the failed 1969 underground detonation of a 43-kiloton nuclear device by the Atomic Energy Commission.

The federal government was trying to free up natural gas with the explosion, but produced gas that was too radioactive for commercial sale.

Wells' home is about 10 miles from nuclear blast site.

Wells and others say many drilling companies like Williams are drilling too close to the blast site and they fear some of that radioactive gas may be released.

4/11/2006 Related story: Two longtime Tulsa titans are teaming up to drill for natural gas in the Rockies