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Earth Crime

Exxon Charged With Illegally Dumping Waste In Pennsylvania 246

Exxon has been charged with illegally dumping over 50,000 gallons of wastewater at a shale-gas drilling site in Pennsylvania. From the article: 'Exxon unit XTO Energy Inc. discharged the water from waste tanks at the Marquandt well site in Lycoming County in 2010, according to a statement on the website of Pennsylvania’s attorney general. The pollution was found during an unannounced visit by the state’s Department of Environmental Protection. The inspectors discovered a plug removed from a tank, allowing the wastewater to run onto the ground, polluting a nearby stream. XTO was ordered to remove 3,000 tons of soil to clean up the area. Wastewater discharged from natural-gas wells can contain chlorides, barium, strontium and aluminum, the attorney general’s statement showed. “Criminal charges are unwarranted and legally baseless,” the XTO unit said yesterday in a statement posted on its website. “There was no intentional, reckless or negligent misconduct by XTO.”'
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Exxon Charged With Illegally Dumping Waste In Pennsylvania

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  • by chromaexcursion ( 2047080 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @10:19PM (#44826005)
    A corporation's board of directors are legally responsible for the company's actions.
    Failure to appear when subpoenas are issued will have serious consequences for the billionaires.
    You can't just send a lawyer to represent you in a criminal court.
    Forcing the people that run the company to show up in court will send a message.
  • by wbr1 ( 2538558 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @10:19PM (#44826009)

    In Q2 2010, (around when the dumping was occurring), Exxon reported its worst quarterly profits in years. Some might say that explains this, while not excusing this. Corporate pressure to cut budgets was driving lower managers, etc. However, in that -low- quarter, guess how much net profit (not gross revenue) they reported?

    6.86 billion dollars

    (source: [] )

    Yep. In one fucking poor quarter they earned nearly 7 billion in profit. But could not bother to dump waste properly. And this was in the USA, with relatively strict, if often bought, environmental laws and protections. Can you imagine what companies like this do in places that do not care or cannot afford enforcement? Where the African dictator of the month just wants a few million to arm his army of children that go village raping?

    This is the type of activity we should be pursuing and punishing. Not Syria, let them kill each other off if they want, lets not make enemies of both sides by dropping bombs and killing innocents (which does happen). Not pot smokers and growers. Not lil Suzy mp3 torrenter. Not Aaron Swartz. Not Snowden.

    Anyway, I am done ranting, if you stayed through it you can go back to Football/Idol/TMZ now. Cheers

  • by cirby ( 2599 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @10:28PM (#44826049)

    It's according to how much actual toxic waste was in the water.

    While the article (and the excerpt above) mention a list of scary chemicals that "can" be found in wastewater from natural gas drilling, it's also quite possible that the major component was... mud. And a small percentage of oil (usually three percent or less, and even lower for a natural gas well, all the way down to "practically zero") - and other not-very-toxic stuff. Or "toxic chemicals" found in parts per million or lower. If they were using fracking chemicals, the mud might have had some bleach and surfactants in it.

    Now, if the rock they were drilling through had a high metal content, the water may have picked up some of that - but probably not too much, overall. Enough to break water standards, but not enough to be actually dangerous.

    Since there's no charges, it was probably low-concentration stuff - a technical violation, but not serious.

  • Re:No (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 12, 2013 @01:16AM (#44826993)

    You don't think OWS had a serious impact on the political landscape?

    Either you haven't been paying attention or you have a blind spot.

  • Re:No (Score:5, Informative)

    by ixuzus ( 2418046 ) on Thursday September 12, 2013 @06:45AM (#44828093)
    Of course not. [] Back then kids learned about guns and respected them... or rather acted like stupid juveniles with access to firearms []

To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. -- Elbert Hubbard