Is it any surprise that eager beaver, go-get-em NY Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens now says that his department’s review of comments on proposed new fracking rules won’t be done before end of summer, “perhaps”? No, not a surprise at all. This is typical Martens delay tactic behavior.
Martens, speaking in Albany on Thursday, told business leaders of this arbitrary new delay. Can anyone say “productivity challenged”?
Anadarko provided an update on its Utica Shale drilling program yesterday, saying that although it’s still very early, the “strong initial results are encouraging.” To date Anadarko has drilled and is producing from three wells in the Utica Shale. Anadarko has 390,000 leased acres in the Utica, most of it in eastern Ohio. In addition to the update, they included a map showing where they have leased acreage, where the three wells are they have drilled, and where they plan to concentrate their drilling activity (map embedded below).
Tom West, an attorney handling a combined appeal of two New York cases where local judges upheld drilling bans passed by local townships, laid out a timeline for when the combined case will be heard and decided at an Albany conference yesterday. The two original cases are from Dryden, in Tompkins County, and Middlefield, in Otsego County.
Yet another straw man argument from anti-drillers has been knocked down in Pennsylvania. Anti-drillers were trying to fabricate a tale that under Pennsylvania’s new drilling law, Act 13, doctors and health care workers would be “gagged” and prevented from talking about the chemicals used in fracking with their patients should those patients somehow be exposed to said chemicals. It’s been a running headline for over a month.
On Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Medical Society said the matter had been cleared up:
The initial response to the EPA’s new 588 pages of rules governing hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas well drilling (see this MDN story) was lukewarm from both pro- and anti-drillers—at least in the Pittsburgh area.
At the end of March, MDN told you about the latest anti-fracking group to come along, The Preservation League of New York State (see this MDN story). The editorial page of the New York Post has now picked up on the same story:
Chesapeake Energy seems to be in hurry-up-and-drill mode on land in Beaver County, PA in order to secure the land before the lease expires next week. They started drilling without first receiving a permit and are ignoring a stop-work order from the local township. Chesapeake claims the local ordinance states they only have to apply for a conditional-use permit—not receive it—in order to start drilling. The township says the opposite is true.
One of the more interesting (and MDN believes underreported) stories about the economic renaissance occurring because of hydraulic fracturing in shale deposits is the revival of short line railroads. The latest case: