Magnum Hunter Drills 2nd OH Location – Plans 18 Wells on 1 Pad!

Schramm T500XDMagnum Hunter Resources announced today they have begun shale drilling at a second Ohio location–this one in Monroe County, OH. While the fact that Magnum is now ramping up their Utica drilling program is interesting–that’s not the “new news” in the announcement. The new news is this:

The Monroe County wells are the first wells Magnum Hunter will drill using their new robotic drilling rig, a Schramm T500XD. Furthermore, they plan to drill an astonishing 18 wells at this one location–10 of them Marcellus wells, and 8 of them Utica wells. In addition, Magnum is keeping it “all in the family,” by using subsidiary Triad Hunter to operate the wells and subsidiary Eureka Hunter to pipeline the gas from the wells…
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New PA Royalty Bill SB259 Faces Opposition from NARO

Pennsylvania landowners listen up: The PA legislature has just passed a new bill (SB259) that will provide for better reporting on royalty statements. Better reporting would normally be something supported by the National Association of Royalty Owners (NARO). However, NARO is advising PA Gov. Tom Corbett to NOT sign this new bill into law as passed because at the last minute a provision was inserted that can weaken the bargaining position of landowners who have older drilling leases (pre-shale drilling) who want to renegotiate those leases to allow shale drilling. We concur. This bill, as it is, would not be favorable to some landowners.

A copy of Senate Bill 259 is included below. Here’s our analysis of it…
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Top 4 of Top 10 Midstream Companies Operate in Marcellus/Utica

We’re now at the halfway mark of 2013 (wow is this year going fast!), so The Motley Fool investor’s website performed an analysis of the “top 10” midstream (pipelines and processing plants) companies and their stock prices–to see which companies are providing the best returns. The thing that caught MDN’s eye about the Motley Fool list is that 4 of the 10–in fact the top 4–are major operators in the Marcellus/Utica Shale region.

Here’s who made the top 10 midstream list, and surprisingly, who didn’t…
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DRBC Responds to PA Gov. Corbett – Still No Timetable to Lift Ban

MDN told you yesterday about PA Gov. Tom Corbett using strong and direct language with the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC)–to get them to approve drilling rules that will allow several PA counties under a now-three-year-old DRBC moratorium to begin drilling (see PA Gov. Lights into DRBC Over Failure to Act on Drilling Rules). Apparently the DRBC has acknowledged Gov. Corbett’s letter with a response of their own, although unhelpfully they haven’t posted it on their website, nor is it available from any of the press release services. So we don’t know exactly what all of it says.

However, at least one reporter has seen it. Here’s a very brief AP story that quotes from the DRBC statement:
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New Report Details Top Legal Issues for Shale Drillers

What are the biggest legal challenges faced by drillers that operate in shale plays? Energy law firm Steptoe & Johnson knows–and they know because they commissioned a survey of 96 legal services buyers at 56 companies. The result is a new report titled, “Below The Surface: The Legal Challenges of Shale Gas Production” (full copy embedded below).

Those who responded to the survey primarily have operations in four U.S. shale plays. Guess which two shale plays are at the top? Yep–the Marcellus (81% of respondents operate there) and the Utica (76% operate there). The next closest is the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas (33% operate there). The top legal issue faced by drillers? Real estate…
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Schneider National Hiring 60 New Marcellus Truck Drivers in NE PA

Attention truck drivers who want an excellent job making short runs in the Marcellus Shale industry, and who want to make $60,000 per year (no, this is not an infomercial). Schneider National, an oilfield trucking company based in Wisconsin, is looking to hire 60 new drivers to work out of one of two northeast PA locations: Mansfield or Wilkes-Barre. In addition to a well-paying job, Schneider is offering a $5,000 signing bonus and money for relocation.

Here’s the Schneider National press release with details on how to apply:
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SW PA Well Water Testing Project Needs Volunteers

The Washington County Watershed Alliance (WCWA) and Southwest PA Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP), with an assist from Carnegie Mellon University’s (CMU) CREATE lab, are conducting a large-scale project in Washington County, PA to see if Marcellus Shale drilling is affecting water wells in the county. MCWA wants both landowners who live near drilling, and landowners who do not live near drilling, to participate. The program is free and volunteers get a neat little device created by the CMU CREATE lab called a CATTFish that inserts in the back of your toilet–simple and quick.

Here’s more information about how (and why) to participate in the program, along with a flier from WCWA about the program:
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