18 PA House Democrats Dissent from Party’s Vote for Frack Moratorium

BraveheartWell well, what do you know? There are 18 brave Democrats in Pennsylvania after all. MDN was (we think) the first and one of the only sources to tell you of the insanity of the PA Democrat Party who, at their most recent statewide meeting, voted to adopt an official plank in their party platform supporting an immediate and ongoing moratorium–essentially a ban–of all Marcellus Shale drilling in the state (see PA Democrat Party Votes to End Marcellus Shale Drilling Statewide). The state and national media ignored the story, knowing how toxic such a stupid move will be for Democrats at the next election (got to protect the Dem hegemony ya know).

But, we’ve just learned that 18 brave elected Democrats from the PA House of Representatives, including House Minority leader Frank Dermody, wrote a letter on July 15 to the state committee telling them the frack moratorium vote in June is not kosher with them. To which we say, three cheers! Finally, some people with balls intestinal fortitude inside the PA Democrat Party…
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EPA’s Dimock PowerPoint Revealed – But, is it Real?

Apparently the Los Angeles Times has a friend in the radically left DeSmogBlog and so has shared the famed, single EPA PowerPoint presentation that supposedly blames drilling and fracking by Cabot Oil & Gas for methane in nearby water wells. DeSmogBlog has an “exclusive” copy of said PowerPoint, so we assume they got it from the LA Times. We grabbed a copy from the DeSmogBlog website and embedded it below so you can read it and evaluate it for yourself.

The most recent hubbub about Dimock arose when the LA Times trumpeted they have in their possession a never-before-seen secret/internal “report” from the EPA–which turns out to be a PowerPoint presentation–blaming Cabot’s fracking for water problems in Dimock, PA (see LA Times Attempts New Hatchet Job on Fracking in Dimock). Is this finally the smoking gun? Is the Obama EPA now covering up evidence against evil “big oil & gas”?…
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Some OH Landowners Get “Take it or Leave it” Pipeline Offers

Apparently, some heavy-handed tactics are being used by some (not all) landmen in Ohio who are telling property owners to “take it or leave it” when it comes to offers on the table to allow pipelines to cross their land. Landowners beware: a landman may tell you the company will run the pipeline anyway by using the power of eminent domain. Very few of the pipelines now being constructed in eastern Ohio right now have eminent domain power.

If you hear such a statement from a landman, ask to see a certificate from FERC or the Ohio Public Utilities Commission stating that particular pipeline has eminent domain authority. If they can’t produce such a certificate, you know they’re blowing smoke…
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Stone Energy Update: On Track to Drill 30 Marcellus Wells in 2013

Stone Energy is an independent driller with operations both off- and on-shore. Last December MDN told you about Stone’s plan to start spending 33% of its $650 million exploration and production budget for 2013 on drilling in the West Virginia Marcellus Shale (see Stone Energy 2013 Plans: Spend 33% of Budget on Marcellus). Plans were to drill 28-32 new Marcellus wells this year. According to Stone’s second quarter 2013 report released yesterday, they’re right on track. So far they’ve drilled 16 wells and are on track to complete up to 30 Marcellus wells by the end of this year.

In yesterday’s update, Stone CEO David Welch reiterated the company’s strategy is to move away from drilling in the relatively shallow Continental Shelf area of the Gulf of Mexico (less than 1,000 feet of water), and drill more in both the deep water Gulf region as well as in the Marcellus. Welch said their strategy continues to benefit the company with rising production numbers, particularly from the Marcellus wells drilled. We also learn from yesterday’s update that Stone has drilled a test well in the Upper Devonian Shale and expects to bring it online later this year. Select portions of yesterday’s 2Q13 update:
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Hammer Falls: New EPA Edict on Storage Tanks Used in Drilling

Day by day, a little more of the thing that once made America great–freedom and liberty–dies. Hey, no big deal. It’s all done in the name of health and safety. The latest example: The federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has just issued more rules that trample individual states’ rights to regulate oil and gas drilling. It’s the EPA’s ongoing back-door method of one day fully regulating oil and gas drilling throughout the U.S.

The latest EPA rules have to do with oil and gas storage tanks and the emissions that come from them. Drillers and those operating such storage tanks have until either April 15, 2014 or April 15, 2015 (depending on when the tank went into service) to comply with new rules reducing volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions by 95%. The EPA’s latest edict:
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RES Breaks Ground for Wastewater Treatment Plant in Butler, PA

Reserved Environmental Services, otherwise known as RES Water, is a Pennsylvania-based shale drilling wastewater treatment processor. RES’ claim to fame is that they build and operate zero liquid discharge facilities–100% of treated wastewater is returned to the field for re-use in fracking and drilling.

RES has just broken ground on its second wastewater treatment plant–in Penn Township (Butler County), PA. The new $2.5 million facility is projected to be operational later this year. According to RES president Andy Kicinski, more RES treatment plants are on the way in the Marcellus region…
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EXCO Resources 2Q13 Update: 33 Marcellus Wells Now Online

EXCO Resources reported their second quarter results yesterday. EXCO is active in a number of shale plays, among them the Marcellus. EXCO reports during 2Q13 they started to drill two new Marcellus wells and completed three wells, all of them in Pennsylvania. The plan is to complete nine wells by the end of the year.

The Marcellus section of yesterday’s EXCO update:
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