Fracking Trespass Claims Will Ruin Industry, Pa. Justices Told

Law360, Philadelphia (September 12, 2019, 11:26 AM EDT) -- An attorney for a Southwestern Energy Corp. unit told the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Thursday that the state’s booming energy industry would be decimated if drillers were forced to face trespassing claims when a hydraulically fractured well on one property taps into natural gas trapped beneath a neighboring property.

Robert Byer, an attorney with Duane Morris LLP representing Southwestern, told the justices during oral arguments in Philadelphia that refusing to apply the so-called rule of capture to hydraulic fracturing would lead to a glut of new lawsuits against drillers and stymie the industry’s growth.

“To upend the rule of capture here...

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