MDN editor Jim Willis is pleased to announce a new Marcellus and Utica Shale Databook series–for 2013. The first of three volumes, Volume 1, is ready as of today. Databook 2012 was a huge success for Marcellus Drilling News, and we believe Databook 2013 will follow in the same footsteps. Each volume of the Databook shows detail maps for every county in the Marcellus and Utica region where permits have been issued over a specified period. For Volume 1 2013, that period is from January-April 2013. Plus, there’s a whole lot more crammed in each volume.
Pennsylvania State Rep. Jesse White, Democrat from Cecil, PA (near Pittsburgh), has created an image as a minor celebrity in PA’s shale story. MDN has chronicled, in a number of stories, White’s ongoing kerfuffles with both Range Resources and with the state Dept. of Environmental Protection (latest example: Tag Team Grudge Match: Jesse White/Patch v Range Resources/DEP). On several occasions when MDN has written about Mr. White, he’s contacted us to say he definitely is not “anti-drilling,” but instead only wants drillers, and government agencies, to follow the law. He presents himself as a “man of the people,” out to protect their interests. Fair enough–we’ve always reported his comments. We’re not out to personally attack Mr. White.
However, White’s carefully crafted “man of the people” image is now in doubt. An investigation by Pittsburgh CBS affiliate KDKA Channel 2 indicates White has been creating false online identities and using them to attack individual landowners–his own constituents–who support drilling. If true, it means that White is not only anti-drilling, but small-minded and vindictive as well. Here’s part of the KDKA story, from investigative reporter Andy Sheehan: Continue reading
The old real estate bromide “location, location, location” is never more relevant than in the oil patch. An article on The Motley Fool website makes the following observation about the prospects for oil production in the Ohio Utica Shale for Devon Energy, Chesapeake Energy and Gulfport Energy: Continue reading
Although some analysts have given Halcón Resources a drubbing the past few weeks over lackluster production performance for some of their initial Utica Shale wells in Pennsylvania, that’s not slowing the company down. It’s full speed ahead of Halcón–especially in Trumbull County, OH where the first-ever Utica well for Trumbull was drilled (last year) by Halcón will soon go online. Crews are busy at work laying pipeline that will run from several Halcón wells in Trumbull… Continue reading
Interesting. New York Residents Against Drilling (NYRAD), a way-out-there anti-fossil fuel group headed by Ithaca resident Walter Hang, sent out an URGENT ALERT! URGENT ALERT! email last night. The gist of the email is that Gov. Andrew Cuomo is speaking today (Thursday) at Binghamton University–and apparently his very presence in Binghamton, the “epicenter of New York’s shale fracking battle” is an offense to Walt & co. He claims Gov. Andy Ditherer is “testing our political determination by daring to show his face” here in Bingo.
We’re not quite sure what Walt is all lathered up about. Fracking is going nowhere fast in New York–unless he knows something we don’t. Anywho, here’s the alert (purely for your entertainment pleasure) encouraging the anti-fossil fuel faithful to turn out and shout down the governor today: Continue reading
At a ceremony to launch the new Appalachian Petroleum Technology Training Center yesterday in Fairmont, WV, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin was asked the perennial question by reporters: Hey, what about an ethane cracker plant? To which he responded, “I am confident we will eventually get one.” His response seems to indicate, disappointingly, a cracker plant in WV won’t happen any time soon. Of course even if an agreement were announced today, it would take several years to build even a small cracker plant.
A quick update on the status (or rather non-status) of a cracker plant in West Virginia: Continue reading
West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin traveled to Fairmont, WV yesterday to announce the establishment of the Appalachian Petroleum Technology Training Center. The new program will offer students either a one-year certificate or a two-year associates degree in Petroleum Technology at both Pierpont Community and Technical College (in Fairmont) and at WV Northern Community College (in Wheeling). According to officials at the ceremony announcing the new center, people can earn starting annual salaries ranging from $60,000-$100,000 for working in natural gas drilling fields. This new program will help make that happen.
A “key feature” of the program are both indoor and outdoor drilling simulation laboratories, to give students hands-on field training…
In the coming months and years, Marcellus (and Utica) drillers will spend more money–a lot more money–to comply with new air pollution regulations coming from the federal Environment Protection Agency (see EPA’s Draconian Air Pollution Rules Go into Effect, Sort of). Drillers will have to buy new equipment to comply. However, drillers in PA’s Marcellus Shale may be able reduce some of the high cost burden by not paying sales and use tax on pollution-control devices. Tax attorneys from Reed Smith explain: Continue reading
The PA Marcellus Shale continues to be an economic rocket ship for businesses in the supply chain–businesses that sell their products and services to the drilling industry. Latest example: MATCOR, a company that provides products and services for “cathodic protection” (corrosion resistance for pipelines, tanks and other equipment) just cut the ribbon on a new 47,000 square foot manufacturing plant in Chalfont, PA. PA’s Lieutenant Governor Jim Cawley was on hand for the celebration… Continue reading