By RYAN TRACY
The Environmental Protection
Agency said this week it would drop an investigation
that had linked contaminated water to natural-gas
drilling in Wyoming, in a boost for Encana Corp. and other
firms that practice the drilling technique known as hydraulic
The EPA will allow the state of Wyoming to
continue the investigation but doesn't "plan to rely upon the
conclusions' of its previous study, the state and the agency
said in a joint statement.
In late 2011, the agency released a draft
report suggesting water samples near Encana gas wells in
Pavillion, Wyo., contained chemicals consistent with hydraulic
fracturing and present in amounts above safe drinking-water
The findings were among the first by the government to link
water contamination with "fracking" -- injecting water, sand
and chemicals to dislodge natural
gas or oil.
"We're pleased that EPA has agreed to
discontinue its investigation," Encana spokesman Doug Hock
said. "And, we applaud the fact that further efforts in
Pavillion will focus on the few specific complaints about
perceived changes in domestic water well quality."
Dow Jones newswires