Texas company declines to buy Wyoming gas field after EPA finds benzene water pollution

by Abrahm Lustgarten
ProPublica, Nov. 29, 2011, 11:14 a.m.

A deal to sell a controversial central Wyoming natural gas field has fallen apart amidst allegations that drilling there has caused water pollution.

Texas-based Legacy Resources backed out of a $45 million deal to buy the field near Pavillion, Wyom., from EnCana last week, soon after the Environmental Protection Agency said it had detected cancer-causing benzene at 50 times the level safe for humans and other carcinogenic pollutants during its latest round of sampling.