MDN Releases Vol. 3 for 2014 Marcellus/Utica Shale Databook

Databook 2014 Vol. 3MDN has just launched Volume 3 of the 2014 Marcellus and Utica Shale Databook. The Databook is a 3-volume series we issue each year, meant for companies and even serious landowners who want to know what’s happening and where in the Marcellus and Utica Shale. It contains a series of maps–one for each county throughout the northeast where permits have been issued for shale wells. On the maps we show where the permit was issued, and who (which company) it was issued to. In addition, MDN editor Jim Willis writes a number of special sections to update you on drilling and related issues, including regulatory, prices, rig and well count trends and much more. Each issue also sports special sections not repeated in the other volumes. In Vol. 3 we have a comprehensive list of Marcellus/Utica waste facilities–injection wells, landfills and more. We give you the name, location and phone number for the facility. Bang–we just saved you about 10 hours of work! Also in Vol. 3 is a special contributed section by two experts on factors influencing the production of Marcellus Shale wells–and how those factors affect a well’s decline curve…
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Free/Accurate Online Royalty Calculator for OH Utica Wells

cool toolsA cool new online tool has just been released for landowners (and nosy neighbors) who want to calculate estimated royalties for any individual Utica Shale well in Ohio–with a reasonably high degree of accuracy. The tool is called the Ohio Shale Well Royalty Calculator and was created by WellRev Ohio LLC–a Canton, OH company that specializes in assisting county auditors, school districts and local governments calculate tax revenue from oil and gas wells. Below is a link to the new calculator along with MDN’s brief instruction guide for how to use it…
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George Soros Finally Bullies Penn Virginia into Selling Itself

no bullyingBillionaire bully George Soros, the guy who bankrolls just about anything liberal and Democrat has, for years, played both sides of the fence when it comes to the issue of shale drilling (see George Soros Plays Both Sides of Fracking Issue, for Profit). We told you one year ago that Soros had taken a major position in exploration & production (E&P) Penn Virginia (see Penn Virginia the Latest Plaything for Billionaire George Soros). Penn Virginia has a small position in the Marcellus Shale, only 21,700 net acres with no drilled wells. We said the following last March: “Why did he invest? To instill good LibDem values like lifetime employment, free condoms, etc. in the capitalist heathens at the company? Nope. Soros invested $29.1 million in Penn Virginia, grabbing a 9.1% ownership, so he can force them to sell themselves.” What is the Wall Street Journal reporting now? Penn Virginia is shopping for a buyer because they’re being forced to by Soros. It took nearly a year, but Soros got his way in the end. Some people buy and flip houses or buy and flip cars for profit. Soros, playing with the lives of everyone employed at a company, buys and flips companies like Penn Virginia–just to make a buck…
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EnLink OH Condensate Pipe in Trouble? Open Season Extended Again

EnLink Midstream is clearly having trouble getting enough business to justify building a new condensate pipeline in Ohio. In August 2014, EnLink announced a new 45-mile condensate pipeline that will stretch across Guernsey, Noble and Washington counties in Ohio (see EnLink Midstream Announces New Condensate Pipeline in ORV). The project, which connects to another EnLink pipeline in Washington County, is called the Ohio River Valley Pipeline, or ORV. In mid-December, EnLink launched a 30-day binding open season for shippers to sign up for capacity on the new pipeline (see EnLink Launches 1 Month Open Season for ORV Condensate Pipeline). An open season is the time when shippers sign on the dotted line and commit to paying for and using the pipeline when it’s built. If EnLink doesn’t get enough customers, they won’t build it. In January EnLink announced there were extending the open season another six weeks (see EnLink Extends Open Season for OH Condensate Pipeline by 6 Weeks). Those six weeks have come and gone, and guess what? EnLink has just announced they’re extending the open season again, another six weeks…
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Majority of PA Voters DON’T Support a New Severance Tax Right Now

The results of a recent poll conducted of PA voters, paid for by the Marcellus Shale Coalition, is (in our opinion) being misreported. The headlines, which all seem to quote a single story in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, claim that a “majority” of PA voters support slapping a new tax on shale drillers. That’s not how we read the results…
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Southwestern Energy: Great 2014, Even Better 2015 On the Way

Southwestern Energy released their full year 2014, fourth quarter 2014 and preview of 2015 big kahuna update last Thursday. There is a LOT in there. With the purchase of 413,000 Marcellus/Utica Shale acres from Chesapeake along with a boatload of operating and partially-drilled wells, Southwestern is now one of the top 3 or 4 drillers in the Marcellus region (see Chesapeake Sells Close to 25% of Marcellus/Utica Operation). Even before adding the new acreage, Southwestern was going great guns last year. In 2014, Southwestern invested $695 million in Northeast Appalachia, which included $571 million to spud 99 operated wells. Southwestern’s net gas production from Northeast Appalachia was 254 Bcf in 2014, up 69% from 151 Bcf in 2013. Gross operated production in Northeast Appalachia was over 1.0 Bcf per day at the end of 2014 compared to approximately 700 MMcf per day at the end of 2013. They didn’t do much in Southwest Appalachia, as they call it (which means SW PA, WV & eastern OH). That will change this year–dramatically. Spending last year for the NE Marcellus was $695 million. This year it will be $700 million. Spending last year in the SW Marcellus was $4 million. This year? They’re going to spend big money on their newly acquired acreage from Chesapeake: $520 million. Southwestern is whacking their spending in other shale plays like the Fayettville–cutting it in half–so they can invest in the Marcellus…
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Williams Goes Shopping for $3B, Floating Notes to Pay Down Debt

It’s not every day you go shopping…for 3 BILLION dollars. But that’s what Williams is doing. Williams recently consummated a deal to buy Access Midstream, formerly known as Chesapeake Midstream (see Big News: Williams Partners Buying Access Midstream for $6B). Although we’ve also read it was the other way round–that Access swallowed Williams. At any rate, the combined companies, with major operations in the Marcellus and Utica Shale region, have a staggering value of $50 billion (see Deal Details for Williams/Access Midstream Merger – TTV of $50B!). The wedding was Feb 2 and the happy couple need money–fast. So Williams (which is the name plate on the door) has gone shopping for $3B. They’re floating new notes (i.e. debts, or IOUs) in order to, yes, pay down older debts…
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CSSD Expands Certification Standard to Include Wastewater Disposal

The Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD) has popped back into the news. The CSSD is an effort by both the drilling industry and environmental groups to craft a set of standards that both sides can support resulting in (for those companies who follow the standards)–a sort of Underwriters Laboratory “seal of approval” certification. You can boil it down to an effort to, “Can’t we all just get along?” As MDN has chronicled over the past two years since it was launched in March 2013, it’s been a rocky start for the CSSD (see MDN’s string of stories on the CSSD here). MDN has been critical of the organization from the beginning, although lately we’ve begun to warm to the organization and its mission. We’ve spoken in person with both the former executive director of the CSSD, Andrew Place (from EQT) and the current executive director, Susan LeGros. They both make a compelling case for the organization. LeGros and the CSSD announced last week they have, for the first time, expanded one of their 15 standards to include guidelines for what happens to frack wastewater after it has left the drilling site…
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Major Improvements Coming to Fracking Chemical Database FracFocus

FracFocus is the national hydraulic fracturing chemical registry. Some 20 states now use it to fully disclose the fracking chemicals used at each and every shale well drilled. Want to know what chemicals were used to drill a specific well near you? Head to FracFocus.org and you’ll quickly find the answer. FracFocus, supported by the industry, is managed by the Ground Water Protection Council and the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, two organizations whose missions both revolve around conservation and environmental protection. Anti-drillers don’t like FracFocus because it publishes the truth about chemicals used in fracking–it ain’t all that much and it ain’t killin’ people. Therefore, anti-drillers look to denigrate the good work being done by FracFocus (don’t listen to their lies). More good news: Even though it’s just four years old, FracFocus continues to innovate and update. In 2015 they’re rolling out several major new improvements…
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New Research: Shale Drilling has Enormous Benefits for Economy

A new research paper recently published by researchers at the University of Wyoming takes a close look at the economic benefits and potential pitfalls of shale drilling. The paper, titled “The Economics of Shale Gas Development” (full copy below) was accepted last November for publication later this year in the Annual Review of Resources Economics. The upshot of the paper is this: there are ENORMOUS economic benefits from shale drilling–and we’ll realize those benefits as long as we don’t screw it up. That is, we need to be mindful of, and careful to manage, the environmental impacts from drilling…
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A Picture of a “Peaceful” Protester “Targeted” by the Evil Gas Industry

Three weeks ago we told you about Wendy Lee, a Marxist professor at Bloomsburg University (Columbia County, PA) who feels like she’s being singled out for scrutiny by law enforcement authorities because of her protest activities against shale gas drilling (see Anti-Drillers Don’t Like Being Considered Suspects in Crimes). A PA State Trooper showed up on her doorstep a year ago to ask her some uncomfortable questions. She’s still spitting and sputtering about it a year later, even though she was never arrested nor even accused of anything. Lee maintains she’s just an aw shucks peaceful protester and the big, evil, nasty drilling industry is trying to silence her with scare tactics. Just one teeny tiny problem with her contention that she’s “just a peaceful protester.” In this case, a picture is truly worth a thousand words…
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Calendar of Events for Mar 2-15, 2015 [Free]

Below are upcoming events for this week and next. To see the full list of future events, visit this page: http://marcellusdrilling.com/calendar/.

NOTE: To have an item included, please email it to: calendar@marcellusdrilling.com.
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Mon, Mar 2, 2015

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading:
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Ripping the Mask off PennFuture & It’s Former Employees

ripping mask offFor months now, since the announcements of who then Gov.-elect Tom Wolf would appoint in his new administration to head up environmental efforts at both the Dept. of Environmental Protection (John Quigley) and the Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources (Cindy Dunn), MDN has called attention to the fact that both of those individuals are problematic based on their previous roles in the anti-drilling organization PennFuture. A third member of the Wolf administration is John Hanger, a previous Secretary at the DEP and an early member (supposedly founder) of PennFuture. All three once worked for Democrat Gov. Ed “Fast Eddie” Rendell and now are at the top of the power structure in Harrisburg working for Wolf. MDN friend and ace analyst Tom Shepstone rips the mask off PennFuture and exposes it for what it is in a new article published on his always excellent Natural Gas Now website. Tom delves into the intricate (and sleazy) web that connects PennFuture to anti-drilling organizations like the Heinz Endowments, the Delaware Riverkeeper, William Penn Foundation, FracTracker Alliance and others. Because it’s important for PA citizens to understand who these people are–and because it’s important for PA’s legislators to question (grill) Quigley and Dunn about their anti-drilling activities before confirming them–we bring you Tom’s excellent expose below…
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Crushing Defeat for PennFuture in Lawsuit re Compressor Stations

Bill Clinton definition of is isPennFuture, the anti-drilling organization that has produced three top lieutenants in the PA Gov. Tom Wolf administration (see Ripping the Face off PennFuture & It’s Former Employees), frequently uses the court system in its attempt to slow or stop the Marcellus industry. One such case was a lawsuit PennFuture filed against Ultra Resources in 2011. Ultra had eight compressor stations scattered across Tioga and Potter counties–all of them many miles apart from each other. PennFuture tried to make the legal argument that all of the compressor stations should be combined together and treated as a single entity for the purposes of the federal Clean Air Act, which would have resulted in either very expensive equipment to reduce each facility’s nitrgen oxide (NOx) output, or perhaps closed some of them down to make the combined total come in under a certain threshold. PennFuture tried to say the eight facilities are “adjacent” for the purpose of the Clean Air Act. Ultra argued adjacent means “next to,” as in sharing a border. It all boils down to what the definition of adjacent means. Earlier this week U.S. District Court for Pennsylvania’s Middle District ruled in favor of Ultra and against PennFuture…
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One NY Town Plans to Frack Anyway, Looks for Way Around Cuomo Ban

A common misconception for those who live in New York–especially dunderheaded anti-drillers–is that “Cuomo banned all fracking” in the Empire State. Sorry you dolts, fracking has been going on in this state for more than 40 years–and continues to this very day. The kind of fracking Cuomo banned is water-based, high volume horizontal fracking. New York’s drillers have and continue to drill vertical wells and frack them using less than 75,000 gallons of water. Presumably if a driller wants to drill a horizontal shale well and use something other than water, they can do that as well. At least, that’s the theory–and it’s that theory that the Town of Windsor (in Broome County, NY) is using to develop a plan to allow drillers to develop new shale wells in the town…
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PA’s “Independent” Fiscal Office Says Drillers Pay Low Taxes

It appears PA Gov. Tom Wolf’s severance tax proposal isn’t the slam dunk he thought it would be. Must be time to sneak in a supposedly “impartial study” that says raising taxes on drillers won’t hurt anybody–they ain’t goin’ nowhere ’cause that gas in under Pennsylvania soil. And right on cue the partisan so-called Pennsylvania Independent Fiscal Office (IFO)–populated with Democrats appointed by Ed Rendell and paid with taxpayer’s money–has issued a “research brief” which says the “effective tax rate” on PA drillers four years ago was 5.3%–but today it’s a measly 2.1% (robber barrons!). The new “brief” delights Gov. Wolf and the soak-the-drillers-we-hate-fossil-fuels-anyway Democrats in Harrisburg. This is not the first so-called research issued by the IFO calling for high taxes on drillers. They said the same thing last year–only last year’s report was longer (see PA Partisan Study Finds PA Needs to Soak Drillers with New Taxes). Here’s the latest pathetic attempt to build a case for stealing the money from one industry (oil & gas) to give it away to another (big education)…
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