Lights Out on NY Fracking? Senate, Assembly Dems Push 2-Year Ban

lights out Is New York doomed when it comes to the issue of fracking? Maybe. In addition to Cuomo being the ditherer-in-chief and failing to lead on the issue of fracking, an important group of state senators—the Independent Democrat Conference (they share control of the Senate with Republicans)—yesterday proposed a two-year further delay in fracking. Previously the state Assembly, which is heavily Democrat and is led by the nefarious Sheldon Silver, has pushed legislation to kill fracking. Sliver is supposed to be make yet another announcement today (Wednesday) along those lines.

It all adds up to a huge mess and an ongoing hardship for New York landowners. The 77,000-member Joint Landowners Coalition of New York is none too happy about it and issued a blistering statement in response to the IDC yesterday…

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Williams, Boardwalk Announce Marcellus-to-Gulf Coast NGL Pipeline

Williams and Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, two midstream (pipeline) companies today announced a bold new project to build and repurpose some existing pipelines into a new natural gas liquids (NGL) pipeline that will run from the Marcellus and Utica Shale region all the way to the Gulf Coast. The new project, dubbed the Bluegrass Pipeline, would provide an initial 200,000 barrels of NGL capacity per day, expandable to 400,000 barrels. If all goes according to plan, Williams and Boardwalk would like to have the new pipeline online by late 2015.

The JV partners maintain the pipeline is needed because in just a few years the northeast will have too much NGLs and not enough processing capacity to handle it all. MDN heard that argument and its opposite argued at the recent Utica Shale event we attended in Columbus. More analysis about the Williams announcement (and a quick NGL processing primer) from MDN below. First, here’s the press announcement today from Williams and Boardwalk, including a rough map of the route:

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WV Landowners *with* Lease Sue Chesapeake for Drilling Next Door

A mother and son have filed a lawsuit against Chesapeake Energy in Brooke County, WV charging them with illegal trespass under their property and taking some of the natural gas that exists in the Marcellus Shale from under their property. West Virginia does not have a pooling law—the right of drillers to “force pool” parcels of land into a drilling unit if a majority of surrounding neighbors have agreed to allow it.

The strange thing about this case is that the mother and son have a signed lease with Chesapeake—a lease which they renewed for an additional 5-year term. For some reason they don’t want their property pooled with their neighbors into a unit for Marcellus drilling—they refused it. So Chesapeake drilled next door to their property, essentially ignoring them. The landowners say Chesapeake’s close-by drilling has caused them economic harm. It’s now a case in federal court…

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Crosstex Energy to Build New Compressors, Processing Plant in OH

Crosstex Energy has formed a joint venture with Enerven Compression Services called E2 to build and operate new compressor stations and a condensate processing plant in the Ohio Utica Shale. In their announcement today, Crosstex says the company has set up a new $75 million line of credit and will invest an initial $50 million from it in the new JV. First up is building two compressor stations in Noble and Monroe counties in Ohio—they already have an unnamed customer lined up for those. After that, they’ll build a condensate (“natural gasoline”) processing plant. Crosstex will own 93% of the JV and Enerven will own the other 7%.

The Crosstex announcement from this morning:

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1st NRG Still Looking for $ to Drill 7K Acres in Utica Shale

1st NRG Corp. is one of the newer “players” in the Ohio Utica Shale. MDN previously pointed out their press statements seem to be heavy on fluff and light on specifics for how and when they’ll begin drilling (see 1st NRG Corp Gets $7M Loan to Begin Drilling in Utica, Other Plays). They issued a press release last week almost identical to the one from last November. Instead of saying we’re about to finalize an agreement for the Utica, they changed it to say we have finalized an agreement for the Utica. Again, no further specifics, other than they have their hand out looking for money (i.e. investors).

Here’s the latest slightly-tweaked and re-worked version of their previous press release:

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ECA Moving/Expanding NE Headquarters to Charleston, WV

Energy Corporation of America (ECA) will unveil plans today to move its eastern regional headquarters from “over the river” in Kanawha City, WV into Charleston, WV proper—at the Northgate Business Park. The new 60,000 square-foot facility is a good sign that ECA will continue to expand its presence in the Marcellus Shale. Headquartered in Denver, CO, ECA owns over 1 million acres of leases from New York to Tennessee, and operates over 4,600 wells (mostly conventional) and over 5,000 miles of pipeline. Most of their northeast operations are in West Virginia.

More on the new office building:

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PA Leads NE in Corporate Facilities Expansion – TY Shale!

What does Pennsylvania have that New York doesn’t? For one thing, fewer welfare deadbeats sucking off the public teat. For another, PA has shale gas drilling and NY does not. Shale gas drilling has propelled PA, for the second year in a row, to third place in the entire country for the number of new and expanded corporate facilities built. PA is #1 for new corporate facilities in the Northeast—thanks to Marcellus drilling. Too bad NY is missing out—the very real cost of not drilling is loss of infrastructure projects like these.

PA had 430 new or expanded corporate facilities built in 2012 with a minimum investment of at least $1 million and with each facility adding at least 50 new jobs. Translation: On the low end, PA had $430 million in new investment and 21,500 new jobs—most of which came from the shale industry. The actual number for new investment/jobs was more like double…

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MarkWest’s Multi-Billion Dollar Investment in Utica/Marcellus

As we’ve been hearing for some time now, midstream (pipelines and processing plants) will be the dominant theme and focus of the Marcellus and Utica Shale for 2013 and likely beyond. A lot of wells have been and continue to be drilled in the Utica and Marcellus. Those wells now require pipelines to carry the gas and gas liquids to market, and processing plants to get the gas and gas liquids ready for market. MarkWest Energy is one of the midstream companies answering the call.

MarkWest plans to invest $1.8 billion in new infrastructure this year in the Utica Shale region, after investing nearly $2 billion last year:

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Self-Serving Sierra Club Wants PA to Raise Taxes on Shale Drillers

People like the Sierra Club have an interesting concept of what “fair” means. When it comes to other people’s money (OPM), the Sierra Club is only too ready to spend it—especially if they didn’t earn it. But that’s the way it is with socialists who like (their words) “spreading it around.”

The Pennsylvania Chapter of the extremist environmental group Sierra Club isn’t happy with “only” $200 million in impact fees/taxes. Oh no…they think a severance tax could easily more than double that amount—so it can be “spread around” among the enviro faithful—most particularly for themselves:

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