EOG Resources Inc., the natural gas company cited because a fire in one of Marcellus Shale wells spewed gas and wastewater for 16 hours before it was brought under control, has signed an agreement to sell 50,000 net acres, mostly in Bradford County.

The company reached the $405 million deal with Newfield Exploration Co., which will more than double its land holdings in the Marcellus region.

Both companies are based in Houston. The deal is expected to close by the end of 2010.

Newfield said in a release that it will finance the purchase through its revolving credit facility, and eventually reduce that debt by selling nonstrategic assets.

EOG was rebuked by the state after the well blowout in Clearfield County in June, but said that was unrelated to its announcement in August that it was selling nearly a quarter of its Marcellus holdings in Pennsylvania.

Newfield said that there are more than 400 possible well locations on that acreage.    - Roslyn Rudolph