CONSOL & Noble Energy Form New Marcellus Midstream Company

Rather than contract with MarkWest Energy, Williams, or another midstream company, CONSOL Energy and Noble Energy, who together have a joint venture to drill in certain areas of the Marcellus Shale (or “upstream” venture), have now decided to form their own “midstream” (or pipeline) company too. Dubbed CONE Midstream–perhaps some weird amalgamation of the CONSOL and Noble Energy names–the new midstream company will take the form of a master limited partnership, or MLP. So far CONSOL and Noble have only filed paperwork and announced who will sell units (rough equivalent of shares of stock). While the announcement from CONSOL doesn’t say who will operate the new midstream company, it sure looks to us like CONSOL will be the one calling the shots…
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MarkWest Expanding Again in Butler County, PA with Rex & EdgeMarc

When you have a good thing going, like MarkWest Energy does with its Keystone processing complex in Butler County, PA, you keep growing it. And that’s just what MarkWest is doing. The company announced today they have a couple of new customers for the complex–Rex Energy and EdgeMarc Energy. The new customers will each get their own 200 million cubic feet per day (Mmcf/d) processing plants in the Bluestone facility–part of the Keystone complex that includes Bluestone and Sarsen facilities. In addition, MarkWest is also adding an additional 40,000 barrels per day (Bbl/d) of de-ethanization capacity and over 20,000 Bbl/d of additional propane and heavier NGL fractionation capacity. It means more capacity, more production, more money for landowners, and more major money will be invested in Butler County…
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Antero Boasts 5K Potential Drilling Locations in Marcellus/Utica

Antero Resources continues to impress. The company has now amassed 493,000 acres of leases in the Marcellus/Utica, which includes access to the Devonian layer as well. As we told you a month ago, their drilling program is rapidly expanding (see Antero Resources: Marcellus/Utica Program Going Gangbusters). And as we told you barley three weeks ago, they had a tremendous second quarter (see Antero Resources 2Q14: Gas Production Doubles, NGLs Quadruple). Following on their 2Q14 update, MDN has located a copy of the Antero PowerPoint slide deck, recently updated and jam-packed with charts and maps and graphs. One very interesting statistic is Antero’s 3P (proved, probable and possible) drilling locations…
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Cracker Race Continues: Odebrecht Files Remediation Application

The race continues to see who will build the first multi-billion dollar ethane cracker plant in the Marcellus/Utica region. Yesterday MDN brought you the news that Shell had filed, back in May, a detailed air pollution application with the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) for their proposed cracker plant in Beaver County, PA (see Details for Shell Ethane Cracker Revealed in Air Pollution Application). Although arriving on the scene several years after Shell’s project, Odebrecht announced last November they want to build a cracker plant near Parkersburg, WV (see WV Announces Brazilian Company to Build Ethane Cracker Complex). Odebrecht has now filed a similar document–a Voluntary Remediation Program application–with the WV Dept. of Environmental Protection (WVDEP)…
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Final EIS for Constitution Pipeline Delayed Another 2 Months, Ugh

The Constitution Pipeline, which MDN has covered for more than two years, is a $683 million Williams pipeline project with backing from Cabot Oil & Gas that will run from Cabot’s gas fields in Susquehanna County, PA all the way to Schoharie County, NY. It’s an important project for Cabot Oil & Gas since it will move an additional half billion cubic feet of natural gas per day for the company. A month ago MDN told you the final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was due “any day” (see Constitution Pipeline Update from Cabot – Final EIS Due Any Day). The EIS was already delayed, and now we learn that it’s delayed yet again. According to top energy blogger and analyst Richard Zeits, the EIS for the Constitution is now delayed until the end of October–another two months…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Tue, Aug 26, 2014

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading:
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PA Production Smashes Record Again – Top 10 Wells, Top 5 Counties

record breakingWithout a doubt the biggest story from last week, which broke on MDN’s first day off in our one-week vacation, was the new natural gas production numbers coming from Pennsylvania and the Marcellus Shale. The PA Dept. of Environmental Protection released production numbers for the first six months of 2014, which show that PA produced an incredible 1.94 trillion cubic feet during that period–up 14% from the last half of 2013 (1.697 Tcf), and comparing apples to apples, up an astonishing 38% from the same period a year ago, the first half of 2013 (1.406 Tcf). PA also produced 1.7 million barrels of condensate (or natural gasoline) and 182,000 barrels of oil. Below we list the Top 10 producing wells in 1H14. Would it surprise you to learn that 9 of the top 10 are found in the same county, drilled by one company? We also include the full list of all 7,679 wells drilled so far…
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DEP Fines Cabot $76K for Out-of-Control Well in Susquehanna County

Back in January Cabot Oil & Gas “lost control” of a well in Susquehanna County, PA for a period of 27 hours. Cabot said it could not determine the exact amount of natural gas or fluid released because it was not possible to safely measure the flows. However, most of what got released was methane–the same thing that comes out of cow butts in prodigious volumes. Even though the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) says there were “no significant environmental impacts,” the DEP slapped Cabot with a $76,546 fine for their inability to keep control of the well and for the unquantified discharges that came from it…
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Details for Shell Ethane Cracker Revealed in Air Pollution Application

We now have a very detailed, inside look at Shell’s proposed ethane cracker plant. In May, Shell filed an Air Quality Plan Approval application with the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection. The 715-page document (just now coming to light, full copy embedded below)–mammoth in scope and size–lays out, in detail, just how much air pollution the proposed ethane cracker would produce. As part of that document we gain insight into the technology Shell plans to use at the plant. The application also outlines other potential impacts from the plant, including soil and vegetation. The application concludes that the proposed plant emissions “are not expected to result in adverse effects to soils, crops, or plant species of concerns, within the vicinity of the project site”…
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EnLink Midstream Announces New Condensate Pipeline in ORV

Earlier this year, midstream company Crosstex Energy merged with the midstream division of shale driller Devon Energy and gave birth to a new company–EnLink Midstream (see Time to Congratulate Devon & Crosstex on the Birth of EnLink). EnLink has a small but growing presence in the northeast, including the Utica Shale. EnLink’s commitment to the Ohio River Valley (Utica Shale) has just doubled by adding another $250 million committed to a project that will build a new 45-mile condensate pipeline and add compressor stations in Noble, Belmont, and Guernsey counties…
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NRP Buys VantaCore to Supply Rocks to Marcellus/Utica Drillers

Natural Resource Partners (NRP), a company headquartered in Houston, TX but with it’s operations headquarters in Huntington, WV has its fingers in a lot of pies–including coal companies, concrete companies, and oil and gas companies. NRP has just added yet another aggregates (concrete and rocks) company to its portfolio of companies. NRP purchased VantaCore Partners, a Philadelphia company, mainly because of VantaCore’s operations that supply limestone and base material to oil and gas companies in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays. NRP knows a good thing when it sees it…
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PA DOH “Improves” Enviro Health Complaints Process

A completely manufactured smear campaign by anti-drilling PBS reporters at Pennsylvania StateImpact continues to be joined by other willing, colluding accomplices in mainstream media outlets who accuse the PA Department of Health of either ignoring or intentionally hushing up so-called complaints. MDN previously outlined the chronology of the propaganda campaign by StateImpact Pennsylvania and the pushback by Secretary of Health Michael Wolf (see PA’s Sec of Health Fires Back at Reckless Accusations Against Dept). Because anti-drillers believe they have a winning issue (completely divorced from reality, but that doesn’t stop them), they continue to hammer away. And so, finally, Wolf (and Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration) are now playing defense instead of calling out these sleazeballs and exposing them for the frauds they are. The Dept. of Health has recently introduced “improvements to the environmental health complaint processes”…
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Quinnipiac Poll Finds New Yorkers Still About Split on Fracking

A couple of different polling agencies regularly ask New Yorkers their opinion about fracking in the Empire State. It’s always been roughly 50/50 for and against. Downstate, near New York City, it tends to be slightly higher against, and Upstate, in places like Broome County (where MDN is written) it tends to be slightly higher in favor of fracking. Recently one of two main polling agencies, Siena College, tried a new twist, which utterly bombed. They decided to poll in those places most likely to see drilling–except they included places that won’t see drilling and ignored two of the largest counties that would see drilling (see Siena Poll of Upstate NYers on Fracking Fatally Flawed). Garbage in, garbage out. Quinnipiac University is the other major pollster for New York. They’ve decided to stick with their routine questions and poll a sampling of all New Yorkers. And what does it show?…
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Injection Well Earthquakes 16X Less Potent than Regular Quakes

Over the past several years one of anti-drillers’ favorite issues to misrepresent and demagogue is the old lie that “fracking causes earthquakes.” We’ve written many articles examining and debunking that issue (see MDN’s earthquake articles here). It’s always good to establish that fracking itself has caused, at most, 4 earthquakes–out of the 100,000 or more times horizontal fracking has been used. Statistically it’s zero. However, a byproduct of fracking–leftover water and fluid–sometimes is disposed via a deep injection well. IF you inject fluids in a well that HAPPENS to be located near an active earthquake fault, that fluid can cause rock plates to slip, like greasing two pieces of metal that causes them to become slippery. Now a researcher with the U.S. Geological Survey says research shows that earthquakes caused by injection wells result in far less shaking (and damage) than regular old tectonic plate earthquakes…
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Stark State Launches Utica Well Site Training Center in Canton, OH

Stark State College has just launched their new Well Site Training Center in downtown Canton, OH. The new program, which marks the opening of a brand new $2.3 million state of the art facility, is directly aimed at producing workers for the oil and gas industry–especially for the Utica Shale industry. Stark State is part of a four-college consortium that includes Westmoreland County Community College (in PA), the Pennsylvania College of Technology (in PA), and Navarro College (in TX) that are being funded by a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Labor to develop the nation’s first-ever curriculum for shale oil and gas–a high honor indeed! Here’s the details about the new center at Stark, which is just Phase I…
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Calendar of Events for Aug 25 – Sep 7, 2014 [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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