A small independent exploration and production company from Bradford, PA—Minard Run Oil Co.—has just picked up 56,130 acres of leases, 200 miles of pipelines, compressor stations, and 413 natural gas wells—all located in the Finger Lakes region of New York. They purchased the assets from Chesapeake Energy for an undisclosed amount. According to Minard, Chesapeake was “a willing seller,” which kind of feels to MDN like it was a “fire sale” on the part of Chesapeake to get a little more cash on the books before the close of 2012.
For now, Minard plans to continue vertical-only drilling and drill another 20-30 wells in 2013. The company did not mention any plans for horizontal fracking in the future.
Different day, same old broken tune from Mayors Matt Ryan (Binghamton), Sue Skidmore (Elmira) and an assortment of lefty elected officials, holding offices from mayor to dog catcher, who want to ban fracking.
Yesterday the group Elected Officials to Protect New York (see their website so you know whom to vote against in the next election) issued yet another tiresome nag request at a press conference in Binghamton to Gov. Andrew Cuomo asking him to extend the public comment period on the latest minor revisions to proposed fracking rules from 30 days to 90 days, knowing full well that if he does, it will kill fracking in New York. Thankfully the governor is ignoring the group.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has said it’s critical that NYC get more supplies of shale gas—in the near future. New York has new rules going into effect starting in 2015 that will ban certain types of fuel oil, which means all of those apartment buildings will need to be heated with an alternative, and windmills won’t do the job (see Why Mayor Mike Bloomberg Suddenly Loves Fracking).
Williams Partners yesterday filed an application with FERC to provide a new delivery point from their Transco pipeline to provide additional natural gas to NYC—but it involves constructing a new 3.2-mile pipeline (mostly offshore) to make it happen. Welcome to the next flashpoint in the anti-fracking wars…
The Maryland Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission, appointed by MD Gov. Martin O’Malley in 2011 to study natural gas drilling and produce a set of best practices for hydraulic fracturing has finally made a series of recommendations for how to regulate shale gas drilling in the state. It took the Commission 15 months to cast their first vote (see MD Fracking Commission Casts First Vote – in 15 Months!), so let’s just say the Commission isn’t setting any speed records for activity.
The recommendations agreed to today are a first pass and leave out some key provisions. The recommendations, such as they are, will be forwarded to the Maryland state legislature which meets for 90 days each year starting in January.
John Hanger, former Secretary of the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP), candidate for the Democrat nomination to run as governor in PA, and MDN’s very first webinar guest (see Webinar Replay: John Hanger on Gas Drilling and Energy Choices), posted his Top Energy Fact of 2012 last Friday on his “Facts of the Day” blog site. And what might his top fact be for all of 2012? The United States has cut carbon emissions from 2007 to 2012 by 12%—while at the same time growing its economy and using more energy.
How is such an incredible feat possible? Glad you asked. John has the answer: shale gas and the miracle of hydraulic fracturing.
The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading: