For the first six months of 2012, over 85% of Pennsylvania’s shale gas production came from just six (of 67) counties in the state, and more than half (57%) of PA’s production came from three counties—three counties that share a border with New York State (hello NY, pay attention!).
Last Friday the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection released production figures for the first half of 2012. Here’s a detailed look at those numbers, with charts and tables:
Last Friday MDN reported the prediction that New York’s Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC) may well release new drilling rules by Nov. 29 due to an obscure provision in New York law that requires them to adopt said rules one year from the last public hearing (see this MDN story). On Sunday, a DEC spokesperson said the DEC “expects to miss” the Nov. 29 deadline, and in order to avoid restarting the rulemaking process from the beginning, the DEC will hold a public hearing between now and then which in effect restarts the one-year clock ticking all over again.
Do we now have a conclusion to the unhappy tale of a state geologist for Ohio? You may recall MDN’s coverage of the firing of Ohio state geologist Larry Wickstrom earlier this year when he released a map showing revised boundaries for the Utica Shale formation, boundaries indicating where “the best places” to drill are located (see this MDN story). That map apparently ticked off Wickstrom’s bosses at ODNR. Wickstrom had been an employee of the ODNR Geological Survey division for 29 years but he was shown the door.
After Wickstrom we had an interim state geologist, Mac Swinford, who announced a new Utica Shale boundary map due out in September (see this MDN story). No idea if Swinford’s map announcement had anything to do with the latest ODNR announcement or not, but as of Friday, we now have a new, officially anointed, full-time, non-interim state geologist: Thomas J. Serenko.
1st NRG Corporation pushed out a press release saying they’ve entered into a “letter of intent” to develop 7,150 Utica Shale acres in eastern Ohio, although the release does not identify which company the agreement was made with nor which county the acreage is located in. The news here is that there’s a new driller entering the Utica Shale region. It’s a small stake in the play so far—we’ll see what develops.
Chesapeake Energy, the only active Marcellus Shale driller in Ohio, Brooke and Hancock counties in West Virginia, has asked the WV Dept. of Environmental Protection to grant permits allowing them to release certain pollutants into the air from both flaring at some of their well sites and at compressor stations they own. People living near those sites are none too excited about the prospect and said so at a recent public hearing:
The newest Marcellus Shale pipeline became operational today. PVR Partners made an announcement that their Wyoming Pipeline, a 30-mile pipeline running from northern Wyoming County, PA south to Luzerne County where it connects to the Transco interstate pipeline, is now operational. The new pipeline has a 750 million cubic feet per day capacity (MMcfd), of which 255 MMcfd (so far) has been spoken for by producers.
Around 10:30 am Sunday morning a sound described by one neighbor as “deafening” came from the emergency shutdown of a PVR natural gas dehydration station in Monroe Township, PA (near Wilkes-Barre). What happened?