Chesapeake Energy Appoints Anadarko Engineer as New CEO

Robert "Doug" LawlerLess than two months ago corporate raider Carl Icahn and other mercenary “stockholders” of Chesapeake Energy (with the help of complicit reporters at Bloomberg and Reuters) unceremoniously dumped Aubrey McClendon, founder of Chesapeake, as CEO (see McClendon Exits Chesapeake, Well-Bonused “Friends” Replace Him). Yesterday, Chesapeake announced they’ve hired an executive from rival drilling company Anadarko Petroleum to lead them. Three of Aubrey’s closest “friends” that together were running the company via an “Office of the Chairman”–Archie Dunham, Steve Dixon and Dom Dell’Osso–will now go back to their regularly scheduled jobs (and piles of money). Et tu, Brute?

Robert Douglas (“Doug”) Lawler, 46, until this week, was senior vice president of international and deepwater operations at Anadarko. On June 17, he will join Chessy as CEO and a member of the Board of Directors. Doug is a petroleum engineer with an MBA. Our advice to Doug when he arrives at the corporate board room at Chessy: Watch your back when Carl Icahn is in the room. And you darned well better produce a dramatic turnaround on the balance sheet, quickly, or you too will be histoire.
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Cabot O&G Uses Marcellus Shale Gas to Power Drilling Rigs

Cabot Oil & Gas has jumped on the natural gas-powered drilling rig bandwagon. Yesterday, Cabot announced they have begun using “field gas”–Marcellus Shale gas from the very wells they’re drilling–to help power the drilling rigs they’re using to drill for the gas. According to Cabot, this is the first time field gas has been used in drilling rigs in northeastern PA. Cabot is using Caterpillar engines that run on duel fuel technology–part natural gas, part diesel.

You may recall other Marcellus drillers are also using duel fuel, and some are using 100% natural gas, to power their rigs. Those companies include EQT, CONSOL, Seneca Resources and Antero Resources (see Antero Res 2nd Marcellus Driller to Use 100% NatGas Rig Engines for a description of other drillers’ efforts to date). The unique aspect of Cabot’s announcement is that they’re using field gas and not trucking in LNG to power their duel fuel engines. It means far fewer truck trips to the drill site.
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NYSPC Launches Free Webinars to Win Public Support for Fracking

The New York State Petroleum Council (NYSPC), part of the American Petroleum Institute, is launching a free webinar series for the public–particularly residents of New York–tomorrow (Wednesday). Apparently the NYSPC has taken to heart the admonishment of Gov. Andrew Cuomo who recently lectured the NYSPC about getting more of the public on the pro-drilling bandwagon (see Gov. Cuomo Fires Back at NY Petroleum Council over Indecisiveness).

The first session schedule for tomorrow will feature Greg Sovas, former director of the mineral resources division of the NY State Dept. of Environmental Conservation…
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Bipartisan Policy Center: U.S. NatGas Prices Will Stay Low

It seems as if everyone is hauling out their crystal balls to try and divine where the price of natural gas will go in both the short and long term–and they all pretty much say the same thing: The price won’t go much higher for a long time–even if demand really picks up and even if the U.S. starts exporting natgas. The latest organization to take a stab at the prediction game is the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), a Washington, D.C. based organization founded by liberal Democrats and moderate Republicans (mainstream media’s definition of bipartisanship).

The BPC’s Energy Project staff released a new report yesterday titled “New Dynamics of the U.S. Natural Gas Market” (full copy embedded below). The key findings of the study will not make the anti-drilling nutters happy, that’s for sure:
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Chesapeake Donates $1M, Employees Help with OK Tornado Recovery

MDN is no fan of the new Chesapeake Energy under the tutelage of board member and corporate raider Carl Icahn–that you know from reading this site for any length of time. However, when a company like Chesapeake does something good and wholesome and just “right,” we don’t want to overlook that either. Yesterday, Moore, Oklahoma was hit by devastating tornadoes. There were a number of fatalities and a huge amount of property damage. Oklahoma native son company Chesapeake (headquartered in nearby Oklahoma City) announced they will donate $1 million cash to the American Red Cross to help with this tragedy. In addition, Chessy employees are volunteering their time to help in the recovery effort. It is noteworthy, and we applaud them.

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