Shale Environmental Services Company Raided by PA AG’s Office

handcuffsNatural gas drilling support company Minuteman Environmental Services supplies fracking fluid, drilling mud, and hauls away fracking wastewater for shale drillers in the Marcellus Shale. Minuteman’s corporate headquarters in Milton (Northumerland County), PA was raided on Wednesday by a swarm of agents from the PA Attorney General’s office, along with agents from the PA DEP, FBI and IRS. MDN has no idea why the Minuteman office was raided–the Attorney General’s office won’t say.

Minuteman owner and president Brian Bolus says disgruntled former employees have made baseless accusations. About what, we don’t know. In fact, no one in authority is talking, so we don’t know much. Here’s what we do know:
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How the Mighty Have Fallen: PA Rep White Admits Guilt, Not Sorry

MDN believes in fair and vigorous debate of the drilling issue. We welcome opposing viewpoints and often hear from people who disagree with our views. So we take no pleasure in telling you that the facade, the mask has been totally ripped off who we thought was a worthy opponent on the other side of the drilling issue: PA Representative Jesse White, Democrat from Cecil (Washington County), PA. Yesterday we shared with you the investigative story from Pittsburgh CBS affiliate KDKA Channel 2 which provided overwhelming evidence that White has essentially been cyberbullying pro-drillers, smearing them with vicious comments made using fake online identities (see PA Rep White Accused of Faking Online IDs to Smear Pro-Drillers). KDKA has posted a second very damning story of yet another case of it (see below).

Yesterday, White admitted, grudgingly, that indeed he has used fake online IDs to smear people he views as his opponents on the drilling issue. It’s really quite sad. And angering–because in his so-called apology to two people, he really doesn’t sound at all contrite. No evidence that he believes what he did was wrong. No evidence he would have stopped had he not been found out…
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MarkWest Announces Third Processing Plant in Noble County, OH

MarkWest Energy is the biggest midstream company (pipelines and processing plants) in the Marcellus Shale. They’ve also set their sights on becoming the biggest midstream player in the Utica Shale, and they’re well on their way. Yesterday, MarkWest announced their joint venture with EMG, called MarkWest Utica, will build a third cryogenic gas processing plant at its Seneca processing complex in Noble County, Ohio. The new plant, which will add an additional 200 million cubic feet per day of capacity (MMcf/d), is scheduled to be completed in about a year and will service wet gas from Antero Resources’ Utica Shale wells. The first two Seneca plants will be online later this year.

Apparently MarkWest has cleared up any funding issues for building the new plant. Previously the MarkWest Utica jv ran low on money while building the first two Seneca plants and scrambled to get more cash, which they did in February (see MarkWest: We Just Banked $450M from EMG, Another $2.8B Available). Funding problems seem to be behind them now and it’s full speed ahead. Here’s the MarkWest press release which also gives a quick update on their Cadiz processing plant along with a fairly complete list of their customers for all of their Utica processing plants:
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New Partner Invests in Marcellus Shale Constitution Pipeline

The Constitution Pipeline is a planned natural gas pipeline that will run from the heavily-producing Marcellus Shale gas fields of Susquehanna County, PA all the way up to Schoharie County, NY, where it will connect with two large interstate pipelines: the Iroquois and the Tennessee (see New Marcellus Constitution Pipeline Announces “Final” Route). The pipeline is a joint venture between Williams Partners, Cabot Oil & Gas and Piedmont Natural Gas. Add to those three partners a new fourth one:

WGL Holdings announced yesterday they will invest $68 million in the project. They’ll get a 10% ownership stake in the project in return…
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Trans Energy Update: Full Speed Ahead in WV Marcellus

Trans Energy, a Marcellus Shale driller concentrating their efforts in four West Virginia counties, released a comprehensive operational update yesterday. The Trans Energy update names names–wells currently being drilled (and where), with an update on the volume of natural gas existing wells are producing. They’ve upped their natgas production an impressive 79% in the past year.

The Trans Energy update:
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JLCNY Meeting Clears Up Myths About Fracking for Albany Officials

Get three or four hippie protesters together with anti-fossil fuel signs and a forest of media cameras magically appears. Assemble a panel of experts to seriously discuss a serious issue, like shale drilling in New York State, invite people who oppose drilling to participate so you can have an honest discussion and you get…crickets. Hardly any media of any kind. Yeah, there’s not media bias in the U.S. Just keep right on telling yourself that.

Yesterday the 77,000-member Joint Landowners Coalition of New York (JLCNY) responded to Gov. Andy “Ditherer” Cuomo’s challenge to do a little educatin’ out there–to win people to our side of the argument when it comes to shale drilling. The JLCNY hosted a one-day meeting in Albany for legislators, government officials and their staff, to provide real information, real facts, and real data about the drilling issue. A TV station from Binghamton attended. About the only mainstream news reporter to attend was Jon Campbell from Gannett. Here’s his report–published on a blog site (not even in a newspaper):
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New Report: Leveraging Natural Gas Opportunities in WV

The West Virginia non-profit Vision Shared recently commissioned (paid for) the Marshall University Center for Business and Economic Research to provide a report on the state’s ability to grow investment, jobs, and wealth as a result of the abundant Marcellus and Utica Shale natural gas sitting underneath much of the state. Vision Shared believes there is great potential for all West Virginians to benefit from Marcellus and Utica Shale resources, but also recognizes opportunity does not equal guarantee.  Vision Shared thinks it’s in the best interest of the state to understand the full potential of these resources and intentionally strive to maximize the benefits for all residents. This new report (full copy embedded below), takes a stab at providing a blueprint to do just that.

Here’s a description of the report and its raison d’être, from the Vision Shared website:
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