PA’s Top 10 Marcellus Shale Wells – Full Details

Top 10Who doesn’t like a Top 10? We have one for you: What are the Top 10 producing Marcellus Shale wells in Pennsylvania? Would it surprise you to learn that 8 of the top 10 wells are found in a single PA county, drilled by the same driller?

Here’s the Top 10 PA Marcellus Well List, complete with the name of well, county, driller, estimated earnings per day and estimated royalties paid per day:
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Wirt County Landowner Deal Falls Through, Still Searching

In August, MDN reported that the largest Marcellus landowner group we’re aware of, the Wirt County, WV Landowner group with 241,000 acres, was close to signing a deal (see Wirt County Landowner Group Close to Deal for Huge 241K Acres).

According to the group’s chairman James Lydon, that original deal has fallen through and the group is now back in the hunt for a deal, talking with other drillers…
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Tipping Point: More NatGas Now Produced by Shale than Conventional

According to energy consulting firm PIRA Energy Group, the United States has reached a tipping point: We now produce more natural gas from shale deposits and “tight gas” formations (i.e. “unconventional sources”) than we do from traditional, conventional sources.

In a wide ranging article (below), PIRA and others quoted talk about the tremendous drop in prices for natural gas and gas liquids, the startling turnaround in chemical manufacturing in this country (because of the abundance of cheap natural gas and feedstocks like ethane), and the importance of the Marcellus/Utica in this whole equation. Hint: Nearly 1/3 of the natural gas being produced from shale comes from the Marcellus/Utica…
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Purdue Researchers: Shale Energy Adds $478B Per Year to US Economy

Researchers at Purdue University recently presented the results from two studies analyzing the economics of shale energy and its impact on the U.S. economy (summary embedded below). They discussed their findings at the annual North American joint conference of the United States and International Associations for Energy Economics in Anchorage, Alaska (in July). What did the Purdue researchers find?

Purdue researchers found that shale oil and gas will increase the gross domestic product (GDP) of the United States by an average of 3.5% per year through 2035. In raw numbers, that means each and every year shale is adding $478 billion to our economy–a number so large it’s breathtaking. It seems to MDN that shale energy is single-handedly keeping our country out of yet another recession…
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New Trend? Bi-Directional NatGas Pipelines in Marcellus/Utica

A new and interesting trend is beginning to happen in the Marcellus/Utica region: flexible pipelines. No, we don’t mean natural gas pipelines traditionally manufactured from steel are now being manufactured with a new material–we mean the flows of gas moving along pipelines is starting to reverse and flow in the opposite direction, depending on the time of year.

In wintertime the northeast uses more natural gas than can be produced in the Marcellus/Utica alone, and as has been the case for decades, pipelines bring gas supplies into the northeast from other areas of the country. However, with the explosion of production coming from the Marcellus/Utica, at other times of the year the Marcellus/Utica produces more than enough gas, and so some pipelines are starting to upgrade so they can flow the gas in the opposite direction. However, as industry giant Rusty Braziel notes, it ain’t easy to just change directions…
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Home Rule Case Before OH Supreme Court – Background

In 2004 the Ohio legislature passed a law that gives “sole and exclusive authority to regulate the permitting, location and spacing of oil and gas wells” to the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources (ODNR). However, like Pennsylvania, New York and West Virginia, local municipalities have bridled against a law that says locals have no say in where an oil or gas well may be drilled. And like those other Marcellus/Utica states, Ohio municipalities have sued to overturn the law.

In June MDN told you the Ohio Supreme Court has accepted a case that challenges the 2004 Ohio law restricting so-called “home rule” or the right for municipalities to zone oil and gas wells (see Home Rule Case Heads to Ohio Supreme Court). With that case now under active consideration by the OH Supremes, here’s a bit more background…
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How Low Can You Go? Northeast NatGas Prices Dip Below Henry Hub

In what increasingly appears to be a game of limbo, or “how low can you go,” natural gas prices in the northeastern part of the U.S. keep going down. In a reversal of past trends, many of the market points in the northeast are beginning to slip below the benchmark Henry Hub market point price in Louisiana.

What does it mean? It means residents in one of the most populous areas of the country, the northeastern U.S., are now paying less for natural gas than they did just a few years ago because the gas they are using now is produced nearby in the Marcellus and increasingly in the Utica Shale region. There is so much locally produced shale gas, it’s causing big changes in the natgas marketplace, as noted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)…
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MSC Releases Recommended Practices for Drilling & Completions

There are the rules and regulations that drillers must follow, issued by state laws and by regulatory agencies like the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection, the WV Dept. of Environmental Protection, and the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources. The rules & regs are non-negotiable. But then there are “best” or “recommended” practices–those things drillers can and should do that go above and beyond the letter of the law. The Marcellus Shale Coalition, whose members are many of the largest energy companies in the world, has issued seven such “recommended practices” documents to date for its members. They’ve just released the eighth, titled “Recommended Practices for Drilling and Completions.”

This latest set of practices is arguably one of the most important, affecting how drillers drill–everything from spacing to safety to well control technologies…
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