Latest Fed Beige Book Credits Shale with Economic Expansion

Beige Book Two days ago the Federal Reserve released their bi-monthly survey of regional economic trends, called “the Beige Book.” One of the stars in the current edition of the Beige Book (full copy embedded below) is the Marcellus and Utica Shale. Shale drilling is mentioned prominently for Region III (Philadelphia) and Region IV (Cleveland).

According to the Fed, shale drilling is expanding rapidly, and along with it an increase in banking, manufacturing and other sectors. Sort of “a rising tide raises all boats” theme.

Continue reading

NY Republican Senator Works to Thwart Assembly’s Ban Vote

Earlier this week the New York State Assembly voted to ban horizontal fracking until May 2015 (see Lights Out on NY Fracking? Senate, Assembly Dems Push 2-Year Ban). One NY Assemblyman said—on the floor of the Assembly—that his Democrat colleagues are waging an “intellectual and political jihad” against fossil fuels (see NY Assemblyman Says Colleagues are Waging Jihad Against Fracking). If anti-drillers want to ensure the current ban stays, the next step is to get the NY Senate to pass a similar bill.

One of New York’s top Republican senators (who happens to be from the Southern Tier) is Tom Libous. If he has his way, Sen. Libous says there won’t be a vote in the Senate on a moratorium. In fact, he’s working hard to ensure it doesn’t happen:

Continue reading

Trans Energy Production Numbers for Wells in Marshall County, WV

Trans Energy continues to drill solely in the Marcellus Shale of West Virginia. Yesterday they released initial production numbers on two more newly drilled wells—in Marshall County, WV (see below). In late November the company released IP numbers for for a pair of wells in Wetzel County (see Trans Energy Update on WV Marcellus Wells: “Two of Our Best”). Once again company CEO John Corp says these two new wells in Marshall are “two of our best performing wells to date.”

Corp also says the company is starting to produce “operational consistency” and a repeatable “manufacturing process” for drilling successful wells. Trans Energy is deploying two additional drilling rigs in Marshall and Marion counties now with plans to also drill in Tyler County later this year.

Continue reading

Prominent OH Republicans Oppose Kasich Severance Tax Hike

It appears Ohio Republicans have grown a backbone and are opposing the plan by Gov. John Kasich to raise the oil and gas severance tax in the state in order to transfer wealth from landowners and drillers (the ones who earn it) to everyone else (who don’t earn it). At a meeting yesterday of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel said he opposes the governor’s plan to raise the severance tax. Later in the day, Ohio House Speaker Bill Batchelder also piled on and predicted the tax hike will not pass in this year’s budget.

True to form, a Kasich spokesman said “big oil is a powerful lobby with very deep pockets,” implying Mandel, Batchelder and other Republicans are either scared, have been bought off, or both. Whatever happened to John Kasich, once a rising conservative star? That John is long gone…

Continue reading

Obama Interior Candidate Jewell Tries to Claim She’s Pro-Drilling

It’s increasingly evident that Sally Jewell, currently CEO of Recreational Equipment Inc. (REI) and Obama’s choice to head the Dept. of Interior is just another garden-variety liberal Democrat. In Senate confirmation hearings yesterday she avoided questions about her involvement in lawsuits launched by the National Parks Conservation Association, a group she vice chairs that’s suing coal-fired electrical generating plants—shutting them down and killing jobs.

Jewell also wouldn’t say whether or not she favors the most idiotic idea of all time—a “carbon tax.” Translation: She favors it. Her involvement in lawsuits against coal-fired plants and her support of a carbon tax should disqualify her, but we expect she’ll sail through confirmation anyway. Oh! She’s also a true believer in man-made global warming—icing on the cake…

Continue reading

Is Obama to Blame for Decrease in Federal Oil/Gas Production?

A recently released released study by the Congressional Research Service titled “U.S. Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production in Federal and Non-Federal Areas” (full copy embedded below) appears to be quite damning of the Obama regime. The raw numbers don’t lie: All of the increase in oil production in the U.S. from 2007-2012 happened on non-federal lands. Meanwhile, natural gas production on federal lands (including off-shore) decreased by 33% since 2007, and on non-federal lands, it increased by 40%! Is that not ample evidence that Obama’s policies are killing oil and gas development where they control it—on federal lands?

Yes and no, according none other than the National Review, the premier conservative magazine founded by William F. Buckley, Jr….

Continue reading

WV Community Colleges Launch New Marcellus Training Program

Residents living in the northern panhandle of West Virginia who want to get high-paying jobs in the rapidly expanding Marcellus and Utica Shale drilling industry but don’t have “skills” now have an option—go back to school.

Pierpont Community and Technical College (in Fairmont) and Northern West Virginia Community and Technical College (in Wheeling, Weirton and New Martinsville) will begin offering a new petroleum technology program this fall to train Marcellus Shale workers:

Continue reading

BP Refinery Near Toledo Gets Upgrade, Anticipates OH Crude

The BP-Husky Refinery, a 94 year-old oil and gasoline refinery in Oregon, OH (near Toledo), showed off a $400 million upgrade yesterday. The new upgrade took two years and 1,500 short-term workers to complete and will make the refinery more efficient, less polluting and enable it to refine better grades of gasoline.

The interesting part for MDN readers: Right now the refinery gets most of its crude oil from Canada, but new sources of crude are starting to flow from Ohio itself, as well as Pennsylvania and West Virginia—from the Utica and Marcellus Shale. The upgraded refinery has more flexibility to process different types of crude, including Ohio crude…

Continue reading