Horray! Trump Budget Fires 20% of EPA Staff, Trims 31% of Budget

Yesterday President Trump released a detailed budget proposal which includes reducing the way-overbloated (and insidiously bureaucratic) Environmental Protection Agency budget by 31%. The budget would also ax some 3,200 EPA employees–about 21% of the 15,000 employed at the agency. It is sheer brilliance and long overdue. The EPA, under Barack Obama, sought to enforce national regulation of the oil and gas industry–something not permitted under the Constitution. It’s about time the agency was right-sized and its mission reigned in. Of course the reaction by the left has been predictable–from apoplexy to terror (snowflakes always melt so quickly). Here’s how the EPA budget news is being spun by mainstream media…
Continue reading

EPA Administrator Pruitt Questions CO2 as Source of Global Warming

Scott Pruitt

MDN is not a blog/news site about debunking global warming flummery. However, we do mention it from time to time because a religious belief (against any objective proof) that mankind is causing Mom Earth to toast is at the center, the core, of so-called environmentalists who oppose fracking, pipelines and anything to do with burning fossil fuels. In an interview on March 9th with CNBC, new EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said he does not agree that carbon dioxide (CO2) is the primary contributor to “the global warming we see.” He said measuring human activity’s impact on climate change is challenging to do. He is on solid scientific ground–and honest scientists, who happen to believe in man-made global warming, agree with his statements…
Continue reading

Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Fri, Mar 17, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Local Rover Pipeline construction begins; Alex Lotorto plays student again in anti-pipeline stunt; EQT Foundation awards record $6.2 million in grants, scholarships & charitable contributions in 2016; oil to start flowing through Dakota Access Pipe next Monday; CH2M deal with Shell; oil prices fell 12% last week–did anyone notice; the glutted gas world; Trump to repeal Obama fracking rule; and more!
Continue reading

PA Marcellus Production Flies by 5 Trillion Cubic Feet in 2016

Pennsylvania moved to the head of Marcellus pack when it comes to production reporting back in 2015. Until January 2015, drillers in PA were required to file production numbers with the Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) every six months, in October 2014 the Republican state legislature passed a bill that then-Gov. Tom Corbett signed into law moving reporting from every six months to every month (see 2 Bills on PA Gov’s Desk: Monthly Production #s, Lease Termination). The first monthly production report, for January 2015, was made available in April of 2015 (see PA’s First Monthly O&G Production Report Goes Live). Earlier this week the DEP posted production reporting numbers for December 2016, the latest monthly report to be released. When you aggregate all of the production numbers for 2016, you find that the Keystone State produced a new record high in 2016, even though new drilling slowed down for most of the year. PA produced 5.1 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of natural gas last year–an astonishing number! That’s up from 4.6 Tcf in 2015. We thought it would be interesting to compare the monthly numbers from 2015 to 2016, now that we have all of the data. Here’s a series of charts we created, showing production for natural gas, condensate, and oil…
Continue reading

DRBC Secretly Deliberating on Rules to Lift Shale Drilling Ban

The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) held a regularly scheduled business meeting yesterday in Washington Crossing, PA. As predicted, a number of anti-fossil fuel zealots turned up to make noise about the PennEast Pipeline project–and about the prospect of the DRBC allowing shale drilling. As we disclosed yesterday, the zealots all read from the same document prepared by Her Eminence, THE Delaware Riverkeeper, Maya van Rossum (see THE Dela. Riverkeeper Issues Final Orders to Minions re DRBC Mtg). It’s tiresome reporting on the same, predictable behavior by children in adult bodies who never learned manners from their parents. So we’re not going to comment on the circus freak show that was the public comment period yesterday. However, there was an interesting development to report. Lt. Col. Michael Bliss of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Army Corps is one of the standing members of the DRBC Commission) read a statement about the history and possible future of DRBC regulations that may allow shale drilling in the basin. You read that right. According to Bliss, since 2010 the staff of the DRBC has actively been engaged in private (i.e. secret) discussions with various state agencies (we’re assuming the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection) in an effort to, at some point, release regulations that will allow shale drilling in the Delaware River Basin. He said those discussions are ongoing and that before any kind of regs are released, there will be plenty of notice and public hearings…
Continue reading

Some Ohio Landowners Say Rover Violating FERC Tree Clearing Order

A group of approximately 250 Ohio landowners, represented by an Ohio eminent domain law firm, is doing its best to stop Energy Transfer’s Rover Pipeline project dead in its tracks. Rover is playing beat the clock to finish tree clearing following a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) final approval of the project on Feb. 3 (see ET Rover Pipeline Gets Final Approval by FERC). In order to comply with the batty regulation to have trees cleared no later March 31 (due to roosting bats that are protected), Rover moved immediately to begin the tree clearing process. Most Ohio landowners have granted easements and permission to Rover to clear trees. But there are those that have not–either because they want more money, or because they’re anti-fossil fuelers. Regardless, Rover has the right to do it and is using eminent domain procedures to do it. The group of 250 trying to stop Rover has taken two actions: (1) filed a complain with FERC claiming Rover is violating the terms of FERC’s order by not giving landowners advanced notice before clearing trees, and (2) filed a lawsuit in Ohio federal court asking for a restraining order. Will it work?…
Continue reading

NY Fights Back Against NFG’s Request to Bypass DEC Pipe Approval

On Feb. 3, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved a long-delayed project–National Fuel Gas Company’s (NFG) Northern Access 2016 pipeline project (see NFG’s Northern Access Pipe in NY/PA Gets FERC Approval). The $455 million project includes building 97 miles of new pipeline along a power line corridor from northwestern Pennsylvania up to Erie County, NY. The project also calls for 3 miles of new pipeline further up, in Niagara County, along with a new compressor station in the Town of Pendleton. Although FERC has now given permission to build it, the State of New York, specifically the state’s Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC), must issue stream crossing permits. We’ve seen this movie before. The corrupt DEC fiddle faddles around in an effort to stall and delay. NFG is in no mood to screw around with the Cuomo DEC, so they filed a motion asking FERC for a “reconsideration and clarification” on the role of the DEC in reviewing the project (see Gutsy: NFG Asks FERC to Cut NY DEC Out of Pipeline Approval). Specifically, NFG wants FERC to rule that the DEC has NO role in reviewing the Northern Access 2016 project. The corrupt DEC doesn’t like being challenged and last week filed its own motion with FERC claiming NFG is out of line. The peeing match has begun…
Continue reading

SC Antis File FERC Challenge to Stop Marcellus Pipe to Charleston

Transco to Charleston Project – click for larger version

In March 2016, Dominion filed an official application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for a 55-mile pipeline project called the Transco to Charleston Project (see Dominion Files Application to Move Marcellus Gas to Charleston, SC). As the name implies, it will be a short pipeline to connect the Transco pipeline, which is in the process of reversing flows to bring Marcellus and Utica Shale gas south. This new pipeline will grab Transco’s Marcellus/Utica gas and send it to the Charleston, SC area. The projected in-service date is November of this year. However, this project, like every square inch of every pipeline project in the Eastern U.S., faces opposition from nutty anti-drilling radicals who vow to try and stop it even if it gets FERC approval (see SC Antis Fuss Over Pipeline to Carry Marcellus Gas to Charleston). In February, just prior to Commissioner Norman Bay resigning and leaving FERC without a quorum, the three FERC Commissioners voted to grant Dominion the certificate to build the Transco to Charleston pipeline (see FERC Approves SC Pipeline to Flow Marcellus Gas to Charleston). So the nutters have flown into action by filing a request for a rehearing of the Commission’s decision, and filing a motion to stop any construction in the meantime…
Continue reading

HalenHardy Does it Again – New SpillBoa Absorbs Oil/Fuel Spills

Donny Beaver is a serial entrepreneur. He co-founded New Pig in the mid-1980s–a company that absorbs anything that leaks, drips, splatters or spills. In 2001 Donny founded what would become a series of exclusive fly fishing clubs/retreat centers called the HomeWaters Club across Pennsylvania. In January 2013 he co-founded and launched HalenHardy, which solves problems for the Marcellus (and by extension construction) industry. Donny would talk to Marcellus workers who frequented his HomeWaters Club and his natural curiosity landed him in a new venture to help solve problems for the industry. HalenHardy’s tagline is that it develops and manufactures “tools to tackle crappy jobs®” for the mobile industrial workforce. First up was the excellent and award winning Mobile Air Shower by HalenHardy (MASHH) units that remove silica dust from workers in 30 seconds (see HalenHardy Wins Ben Franklin EHS Award for Silica Air Shower). Next up was a device that removes mud from boots in 30 seconds. After that? Portable barriers that will keep people away from dangerous construction sites or emergency scenes–as in “keep the heck out,” a product called Heck Out (see Marcellus Entrepreneur Donny Beaver: Silica Dust, Mud & Heck Out). Donny and his crew have done it again. HalenHardy has a line of products called Spilltration that trap oil, diesel fuel, and other kinds of chemicals, while letting pure water pass right through. Ingenious. What’s even more ingenious is that they’ve figured out a way to condense the Spilltration material into a 5-inch by 25-foot “flat boom” (think a long snake) that can be coiled up and fit behind the seat in your pickup truck. This new product, called SpillBoa™, is small enough for workers to carry with them to job sites–saving critical time. In the event of a spill, workers can quickly contain it so it doesn’t reach a storm drain or leak out of containment…
Continue reading

Dominion CEO Asks Senators to Fix Broken Permitting Process

Dominion CEO Diane Leopold

On Tuesday, just as winter storm Stella was beginning to hit along the East Coast, a group of executives testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources. The session was billed as a “Hearing to receive testimony on opportunities to improve American energy infrastructure.” One of the speakers to address the Senators was Dominion CEO Diane Leopold. The thrust of her lengthy testimony was to encourage (implore?) the Senators to (in our words) fix the very broken process of permitting important infrastructure projects in this country. Leopold shared Dominion’s experience in applying for permits to build the $4 billion Cove Point LNG export project in Maryland. As bad as it was with 55 federal, state and local permits and reviews required, Leopold said Cove Point was a relative walk in the park compared to what they’re now going through with the $5.5 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. Something has got to change if anything is going to get built in this country…
Continue reading

UPS Adds 390 CNG, 50 LNG Trucks to Fleet in $90M NatGas Investment

UPS LNG tractor trailer

In 2013 we tipped our hat to UPS, the worldwide package delivery service, for their commitment to growing their natural gas fleet with a plan to add 700 new LNG (liquefied natural gas) tractor trailers to the fleet (see UPS to Grow NG Fleet with Additional 700 LNG Tractor Trailers). In 2015, UPS did it again. The company announced they would another 64 new LNG tractor trailers to the fleet–this batch based in Harrisburg, PA (see UPS Adds 64 New LNG Tractor Trailers to Fleet in Harrisburg, PA). It seems that UPS’s investment in natural gas comes every two years. Yesterday the company announced another massive $90 million investment in natural gas. UPS is adding an additional six compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling stations, 390 new CNG tractors and terminal trucks, and 50 liquefied natural gas (LNG) vehicles to its alternative fuel/advanced technology fleet…
Continue reading

Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Thu, Mar 16, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: PA Supreme Court suspends Jesse White’s law license; pipelines are solution to high energy costs in New England; gas glut leading to low prices in 2017; is changing natgas market about to change again; crude prices plunge because shale oil on the increase; how to fix our failing energy infrastructure; why natgas is the future – not coal; Trump to dump climate change from enviro reviews; and more!
Continue reading

THE Dela. Riverkeeper Issues Final Orders to Minions re DRBC Mtg

Today is the day that (some of) Maya’s minions will show up at a meeting of the Delaware River Basin Commission to attempt to bully DRBC staff during the public comments period. As we’ve been reporting (from a well-placed mole on the DRBC email list) Maya has been issuing orders to her minions–people who apparently aren’t bright enough to form their own thoughts about matters like the PennEast Pipeline (see Mind-Numbed Antis Need Maya’s Instructions re DRBC Mar 15 Mtg). Maya has written out a treatise of objections to PennEast, to be read WORD FOR WORD by the minions–or else. We now have the script that Maya’s mind-numbed robots will read from (see it below). We also have her last-minute instructions to the dolts doing the reading…
Continue reading

DRBC has No Power to Stop Shale Drilling in Delaware River Basin

You’ve heard the phrase, “The Emperor has no clothes.” A lawsuit against the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) by a Wayne County, PA landowner over the DRBC’s ongoing moratorium of shale gas drilling, is exposing the DRBC as having “no clothes” when it comes to their authority over shale drilling (see Wayne County, PA Landowner Sues DRBC Over Fracking Ban). In fact, the DRBC has no authority to stop shale drilling, as they are now being forced to admit in response to the lawsuit. That fact has the DRBC, and radical environmentalists like THE Delaware Riverkeeper, petrified. MDN friend Tom Shepstone, author of the always-excellent Natural Gas Now website, writes about the DRBC’s lack of authority and the need for Pennsylvania to immediately defund the DRBC–until the agency stops their sham pretense of blocking shale drilling…
Continue reading

WV Bill to Exempt O&G from Storage Tank Law Gets Gutted

On Monday, MDN wrote about a new bill introduced in the West Virginia legislature that would exempt storage tanks used by the oil and gas industry from a 2014 law passed following a coal industry storage tank failure that temporarily polluted the drinking water for 300,000 WV residents (see WV Bill Would Exempt O&G Industry from Storage Tank Law). House Bill (HB) 2811 would exempt ~27,000 tanks owned and operated by the oil and gas industry from West Virginia’s Aboveground Storage Tank Act. The bill didn’t get far. On Monday, the WV House Judiciary Committee gutted their version of the bill. The new/gutted version will exempt about ~2,300 oil and gas storage tanks–those very small and very far away from drinking water sources…
Continue reading

Analysis of New WV Bill SB 576 re Co-Tenancy & Joint Development

Yesterday MDN reported on a new West Virginia bill (Senate Bill 576) that aims to bring both the drilling industry and rights owners together to support co-tenancy and joint development–which are stripped down pieces of previous forced pooling bills that failed in the past (see WV Sen. Charles Trump Introduces New Co-Tenancy, Joint Dev Bill). As we previously reported, Senate Bill 244 was introduced in February to address co-tenancy and joint development (see WV Senate Bill 244 Introduced for Co-Tenancy & Joint Development). That bill went nowhere due to strong opposition from rights owners, including the West Virginia Royalty Owner’s Association (WVROA). SB 576 was meant to meet rights owners in the middle, to address their concerns. But as we mentioned yesterday, WVROA is not supporting the new SB 576 either. Although we included a copy of the bill in yesterday’s post, we did not have a detailed analysis of SB 576 vs SB 244. We now have some expert analysis from the legal beagles at top energy law firm Babst Calland…
Continue reading

« Older Entries   Recent Entries »

Password Reset
Please enter your e-mail address. You will receive a new password via e-mail.