More on Antero’s Record Shattering Utica Shale Wells

but wait theres moreYesterday MDN brought you the news that Antero had turned in some of the highest producing wells–ever–in the Utica Shale (see Another Antero Utica Well Top of the Heap: IP Rate of 40.2 Mmcf/d!). We got the context of their announcement slightly wrong, and admitted it at the top of that article. We believed one of those wells to be the #1 overall producing well in the Utica–but such is not the case. As we explained, Antero is now converting the production output from their wells into “gas equivalent” because many of these wells produce a lot of natural gas liquids, including ethane, butane and propane. Even though we got it slightly wrong, the wells are still awesomely impressive for the their record-breaking output.

MDN thanks our friend and intrepid reporter Bob Downing at the Akron Beacon Journal for pointing out the change-up in how Antero reports its numbers (he gave us a courtesy call). Bob went on to research the Antero announcement and found that three of their recently announced wells are ranked in the Utica “top 10” most productive wells overall. Although the Antero wells may not be #1 in producing the most methane (“dry gas”), they produce an enormous amount of NGLs, which are a lot more profitable than plain methane! Here’s a pair of reports from Bob from yesterday:
Continue reading

OH Judge Says Filing Paperwork is Enough to Extend Lease

Ohio landowners should be aware of an important court case just decided that says, in essence, filing paperwork is enough proof of a driller’s intent that a lease can be extended beyond the initial signing period. Several landowners in Jefferson County, OH signed a lease with Fortuna Energy in 2006 that was later sold to Chesapeake Energy (in 2010). The lease was for a 5-year period. Three days before the end of the lease Chesapeake filed a Declaration of Pooled Unit (DPU) with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. That is, they told ODNR in essence “here’s a group of properties we intend to drill on soon” requesting permission to “pool” them together into a drilling unit. That simple act was enough proof, according to a U.S. District Court judge, to allow Chesapeake to extend the original lease beyond the original 5 years.

And so now the landowners are stuck waiting for Chesapeake to actually do something other than file paperwork. Good luck with that…
Continue reading

Utica Shale Transient Workers in Ohio Crosshairs

Calling OH Gov. John “foreigner hunter” Kasich: Ohio is being invaded by foreigners! Time for a dragnet to kick them out!! We refer, tongue-in-cheek, to Kasich’s disdain for non-Ohioans moving to Ohio to work in the Utica Shale drilling industry–doing nasty, hard jobs that often require someone who’s skilled at doing them–like pipefitting and welding, and man-handling equipment at rig sites (called a roustabout). Ohioans can certainly be trained, but often it takes people who have done it to show them how.

The Columbus Dispatch has taken a decidedly anti-drilling stance recently with a flurry of articles that attack the Utica Shale industry. Their latest article takes aim at “transient” workers–people Kasich calls foreigners. It’s jingoistic and repugnant–but then prejudice and ignorance always are. Here’s the Dispatch waxing eloquent on “transients”…
Continue reading

Summit Midstream Closes Deal to Buy 40% Stake in Ohio Gathering

Last December MDN told you that Summit Midstream was buying out Gulfport Energy’s share of the Ohio Gathering pipeline and processing system (see Summit Midstream Buys Gulfport’s Interest in Ohio Gathering). As we said at the time, the deal appears complicated on paper with multiple names (like Blackhawk Midstream), but the bottom line was/is that Summit will be the 40% owner and MarkWest Energy will remain the 60% owner of the Ohio Gathering system.

Yesterday, in an announcement by Summit that’s equally dense with details (likely written by lawyers), Summit announced they’ve closed the Ohio Gathering deal. That’s the sum total of this announcement–that the deal is now done:
Continue reading

Captain Planet to the Rescue! Rice Energy’s Sense of Humor

We just love this story. Rice Energy is one of our favorite Marcellus/Utica drillers. It was founded by Dan Rice and his boys. Dan was, for over 10 years, the single most successful mutual fund manager in the United States. After he helped found Rice Energy to take advantage of shale drilling in the northeast, his bosses at Blackrock fired him–for their own mistakes (see BlackRock’s Screw-up with Dan Rice & Rice Energy). Dan has had the last laugh, however. The company went public last week and is now valued at $2.8 billion (see Rice Energy IPO Soars, Brings in $84M More Than Expected).

What does this have to do with Captain Planet, you ask? It seems that Dan and the boys have a healthy sense of humor (which is why we love Rice). Instead of naming their wells after the landowner, which is the usual practice, they instead name Rice wells after super heroes! Including, yes, Captain Planet–the wacky environmentalist cartoon character from the 1990s. It just brings a smile to our faces, and we thought it would to yours as well. Below is the list of Rice wells and the super heroes they’re named after…
Continue reading

The Band is Back Together! Anti-Drillers to Visit Binghamton U

The band is three-fourths back together. A group of radical anti-drilling organizations, including NYRAD (New York Residents Against Drilling), the League of [Liberal Democrat] Women Voters, NYPIRG, the Sierra Club and other lesser-known wacko organizations are sponsoring an “information” (i.e. propaganda) night at Binghamton University this Friday. And they’ve re-assembled most of the band, er, anti-drilling “experts” that visited Cornell University with their traveling road show/circus last October (see Latest Laughable NY Anti Tactic – Not Enough Gas, Just Move Along).

Retired systems engineer for IBM and Lockheed Martin Jerry Acton will be there to induce death by PowerPoint. So too will retired Mobil Oil Executive Vice President Lou Allstadt (who’s already made his millions, so he doesn’t want any silly “farmers” to make money too, who the *$#@ do they think they are?). Oh, and Brian Brock, an anti-drilling retired geologist. Notice a theme here? All retired, all anti-drilling, with nothing to do. Road trip!…
Continue reading

Glow-in-the-Dark Bob Hagan: Shrill and Nutty

Ever notice that when anti-drillers can’t seem to convince the public of their views, they get nuttier? They start spinning wild yarns, like all that fracking waste is radioactive and we’re going start glowing in the dark any day now. That’s the kind of wild tale being spun by Youngstown, OH Rep. Bob Hagan (Democrat).

Because not enough Ohioans are turning against Utica Shale drilling, it’s time to ratchet up the rhetoric and old Bob is ready to pour it on. Here’s his latest glow-in-the-dark warning…
Continue reading

New Gas Drilling Website Debuts in Broome County, NY

Huh. Broome County, where MDN is written from, has developed a new website to provide information about natural gas–as in gas drilling (should it ever come to NY). We’ve given the site a good look (check it out here). It’s well done and has some useful information for landowners and residents and those with questions in general. Broome County Executive Debbie Preston spearheaded the effort (she’s a sharp gal, we’re glad she’s on the pro-drilling side of the issue).

Our only complaint: We didn’t even know this site was being created, and it doesn’t in any way reference Marcellus Drilling News, which is a small business in Debbie’s back yard devoted to providing news and resources–and promoting–safe gas drilling. So although we like the site and think it’s great, we’re disappointed we weren’t even contacted about it…
Continue reading

PwC: Marcellus, Other Shale Play M&A Deals Heat Up in 2013

According to one of the top accounting/consulting firms in the world, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), mergers & acquisitions (M&A) activity in the oil and gas sector in the U.S. heated up in 2013 and “included a strong uptick in the last three months of the year.” Overall there were 182 total deals accounting for $115.9 billion in total deal value for 2013. Also according to PwC, shale was an important part of that–in particular the Marcellus Shale.

PwC tracks M&A deals worth $50 million or more. During 4Q13, there were four such deals in the Marcellus, totaling $1.1 billion. The Utica had two deals in 4Q13 worth $263 million. For all of 2013, there were 79 shale deals (across all shale plays) that contributed $53.2 billion–that is, shale deals represented half of all oil & gas M&A deals during 2013. Here’s the announcement and analysis from PwC (sorry, we couldn’t score a copy of the full report, just the summary):
Continue reading