Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Fri, Apr 19, 2013

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading:


Is the Utica Shale Still a Top-Tier Play?
The Motley Fool
The Utica Shale remains a bit of an enigma for drillers and investors alike. Some see it as the next big thing, while others are cautiously backing away. One thing is for sure: For many drillers, the Utica Shale isn’t living up to the original sky-high expectations, especially for oil content.

Ohio House Republicans remove Gov. Kasich’s oil and gas severance tax proposal from biennial budget bill
Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s proposal that a “20 percent income-tax cut in the next three years, a 50 percent tax deduction for business owners on up to $750,000 in net income, and a 0.5 percentage-point cut in the state sales-tax rate to 5 percent” be offset by an increase in both the state’s oil and gas severance tax applicable to horizontal shale wells and a major expansion of the sales-tax base has been removed by Republican leaders in the Ohio House of Representatives.

Top Ohio Oil & Gas Regulator Lauds State Regulation
Energy in Depth – Ohio
This week, Rick Simmers, Chief of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources — Division of Oil & Gas Resources, traveled to Washington, DC, to explain to the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee that Ohio’s hydraulic fracturing and Class II injection well program is properly regulated by the state — and has a track record to prove it.

D&L Creditor Owed $950,000 Speaks Out
Youngstown Business Journal
Tom’s Sewer and Drain is among the top 20 creditors owed money by D&L, the embattled energy company that filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 Tuesday, along with its subsidiary, Petroflow Inc.

Ohio Petroleum Council Applauds Pipeline Vote
Youngstown Business Journal
The Ohio Petroleum Council is applauding the Ohio General Assembly’s passage of a resolution urging the federal government to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. The resolution passed the Ohio House Wednesday with an overwhelming 90-7 affirmative vote.

Oil and Gas Rights — Reserved? A Litigator’s Perspective On The Mong Case
Oil & Gas Law Report
In Mong v. Kovach Holdings, the plaintiff, Joseph Mong, sold approximately 70 acres of land near Warren, Ohio, he had recently acquired from Alice McMenamin to Defendant Kovach Holdings at auction. Mr. Mong apparently intended to reserve to himself the oil and gas rights associated with the property.


Shell, Chesapeake Secure More Well Drilling Permits
Youngstown Business Journal
Shell Western E&P Inc., or SWEPI, a division of Royal Dutch Shell, has secured a new permit to drill in Lawrence County, Pa., according to records from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

Fracking Tax Pushed in Pennsylvania Green-Energy Governor Quest
John Hanger, a lawyer and former state regulator, was the first Democrat to enter the race. At least half a dozen others are either running or considering it, and many — Representative Allyson Schwartz, State Treasurer Rob McCord, and former Representative Joe Sestak — have better name recognition. There’s something that sets Hanger apart, though: He’s running as a green energy evangelist.

NIOSH study prompts calls for silica exposure controls
Pittsburgh Business Times
Inspectors from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration were called to a well site April 4 in Liberty, Pa., where Halliburton Energy Services was performing a frac job. They were responding to a complaint about silica exposure — one of the oldest occupational hazards that, with the natural gas boom, is hitting this region in a new way.

West Virginia

Aither Chemicals mulls plans for cracker and PE plant in Marcellus Shale region
Plastics News
Aither Chemicals LLC has its eye on building a natural gas-based cracker unit that would make polyethylene and related products at a location in Ohio, Pennsylvania or West Virginia.

Beri Fox: Marcellus Shale helps manufacturing
Charleston Daily Mail
We need to level the playing field, and continuing to provide affordable natural gas from the Marcellus Shale must be part of our long-term strategy to “reshore” our manufacturing jobs and rejuvenate our goods-producing sector.


API: State Department supports Keystone XL pipeline
Akron Beacon Journal
The Keystone XL pipeline is in America’s national interest and would be safe, according to the State Department’s latest review, API Senior Downstream Manager Cindy Schild told reporters this morning in calling for approval of the project.

Shale Market Approaching ‘Guillotine Moment’
NGI’s Shale Daily (requires paid or free trial access)
“Most everybody has been focusing on the supply side of this, of course…[but] it’s that thing that doesn’t seem as obvious — it’s the demand side. It is a fact that natural gas prices have been so low for so long that people in the world have taken notice. And I will tell you that over the next several months, you’re going to see an increasing list of new demand sources for natural gas. And that’s the Darnay moment for us.”

Fox’s Phony Firewater Frenzy Over Gasland Part II
Energy in Depth – NMI
Gasland Part II is coming and, like most sequels, it’s likely to be a dud. But Josh Fox says he plans on generating a “frenzy” to hype the movie, and it will find a receptive audience among those who want to clear out rural America so they can have it for themselves.

What Every Investor Should Know About Oil And Gas Micro Caps
Seeking Alpha
Atticus Lowe was among those who saw more smoke than fire in the fevered puffery of the shale industry’s promoters. With an established track record now, the industry has proved its potential for him, and he is bullish on gas over the long term. He shares his assessment of some of the promising oil and gas players in this interview with The Energy Report.

Chesapeake’s McClendon sets out on a new venture; ‘not scared of natural gas’
Three weeks after stepping down as the Chief Executive of Chesapeake Energy Corp., Aubrey McClendon has launched a new energy company half a mile from his old office, The Oklahoman newspaper reported.