Yesterday MDN highlighted the official financial and operating update from MarkWest for 2013 (see MarkWest’s Banner 2013, Plans for 2014). Also happening yesterday that we’re reporting on today, was the inevitable investor phone call with top MarkWest management. In the past MarkWest has produced some great PowerPoint presentations, loaded with useful information. They didn’t disappoint this time around either. Below is a copy of the newest PowerPoint slide deck from yesterday’s investor call, along with a transcript of MarkWest CEO Frank Semple talking his way through the slides.
Although you’ll want to review the entire slide deck, here are our favorite slides… Continue reading
NPR’s StateImpact Pennsylvania is only too happy to bring us the breathless news of who the baddest of the bad were in the Marcellus drilling industry in PA for 2013. How do they measure who was naughty and who was nice? Well, they’re all naughty (right?), but the naughtiest were those who paid the biggest fines last year. It may surprise you to know that the when you add all fines together, the company paying the most in 2013 was Williams, a pipeline operator–not a driller. Williams settled up in 2013 for violations going back several years, mostly related to accidents and drilling mud spills that resulted from foul weather (including Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee). Williams’ total fine tab in 2013 was $388,694 (for violations occurring in 2011-2012). Coming in at #2 was National Fuel Gas Company’s Seneca Resources subsidiary. They were clipped $377,000 for violations occurring from 2010 to 2013.
Below are the top 5 violators cumulatively (adding up all of their violations), along with the top 5 biggest single violations from last year, in the PA Marcellus drilling industry: Continue reading
This is what happens when local townships create their own oil and gas zoning laws: chaos and confusion. Like that in Mt. Pleasant (Washington County), PA over water impoundments (ponds) that Range Resources wants to use for drilling in nearby townships. Mt. Pleasant was one of seven infamous anti-drilling townships that sued the state (and eventually won) to overturn the Act 13 law, a law that provided for expert, even-handed and uniform zoning practices throughout the state with regard to oil and gas drilling (see Happy Story Ends Badly Because of 7 PA Towns). What’s left in the wake of overturning Act 13 is petty squabbling by town boards ill-equipped to handle complex oil and gas oversight–i.e., Mt. Pleasant.
After hitting a few rough patches with Wheeling, WV Planning Commission, GreenHunter Water finally received a green light to proceed with a frack wastewater recycling facility in Wheeling, along the shore of the Ohio River. Even though one Planning Commission member, Gloria Delbrugge, keeps a firmly closed mind about the facility (see Wheeling Councilwoman Will Shun GreenHunter Ribbon Cutting). Anti-drillers often have closed minds. All seemed fine with the Commission’s approval in hand and GreenHunter was on track to open the facility by the end of last year. But it still hasn’t happened. Why?
The main reason is that they’re still waiting on permission from the Coast Guard to move frack waste water by barge down the Ohio to points where GreenHunter owns some injection wells where they plan to dispose of some of the wastewater (see Coast Guard Wants Frack Wastewater Barges Tested – Every Load). There’s also the matter of receiving permits for trucks entering and exiting the facility (see GreenHunter’s Wheeling Frack Wastewater Facility Hits a Snag). And they’ll permits for the barges when/if the Coast Guard finally approves the barging plan. Oy vey! Regardless, GreenHunter remains laser focused on the Marcellus/Utica and is committed to bringing this (and other) facilities online. Here’s an update: Continue reading
A few days ago we gave you our eyewitness account of a debate between John Holko, president of Lenape Resources and Sandra Steingraber, author, erstwhile biologist and Rachel Carson wannabe (see Fracking Debate at Binghamton U: Holko vs Steingraber). It was a good debate to illustrate the utter lack of credibility and facts used by anti-drillers like Steingraber. In writing up our review, we overlooked perhaps the most outrageous and silly thing Steingraber said Monday night. She was pressing home the point she believes it’s time, right now, for New York to flip the switch and end the use of all fossil fuels (yes, she’s that “out there”). Debate moderator Rob Kilmer was somewhat incredulous and asked her if/how we might accomplish such a feat. She responded there is historical precedence–that at one time in our country’s (evil, vile) history, we could not conceive of a national economy without slave labor–and in the same way we overcame that morally abhorrent practice, we can overcome using fossil fuels today–apparently something equally abhorrent for Steingraber. You read that right–she equated burning fossil fuels for energy (something every single person reading this does, including Steingraber) with the enslavement of Africans in our distant past. How twisted is that?
Our good friend Tom Shepstone from the must-read Natural Gas Now website brings us his view of the debate and recounts Steingraber’s “gilding of the lily” with her slavery comment… Continue reading
Antero Resources, a very big driller in both the Marcellus and Utica Shale, and owner of the (so far) best initial performing well in the Utica (see Antero Resources Utica Well Produces Stratospheric 38.9 Mmcf/d), released their fourth quarter and full year 2013 financial and operational update yesterday. It’s long, and full of information. Below is the operations portion of the update. Antero is operating 15 drilling rigs in the Marcellus and 5 rigs in the Utica. They currently have 85 wells either being drilled, or waiting to be completed. They are a seriously big Marcellus/Utica driller that should be on your radar if you have an interest in northeastern shale drilling.
MDN has chronicled the marriage of Crosstex Energy (a midstream company) and Devon Energy’s midstream division (see Crosstex Energy Gets a Name Change, Merger with Devon Proceeds). The new entity will take on the name EnLink Midstream and will continue to have major operations in the Marcellus/Utica region. Not every t has been crossed and i dotted, yet. The two are close to tying the knot–the shareholders of both companies need to approve the deal. But it’s a foregone conclusion that the deal is happening and will happen very soon.
It comes as no surprise that the two companies have today announced who will be on the board of directors for the new EnLink operation, and who will lead it as executive management. Here is the announcement that names names for the coming EnLink when the merger is finalized: Continue reading
Because it’s Friday and we’re in a jovial mood, we’ve decided to award an “at-a-boy/girl” award today, to… Access Midstream. A few years ago Chesapeake Midstream was spun off into it’s own company and later renamed Access (see Chesapeake Midstream Changes Name to Access Midstream). Access has a serious presence in the Marcellus and Utica Shale region, among other shale basins across the country.
So why the recognition today? Because even though New York politicians like Gov. Andrew “can’t-make-a-decision” Cuomo have obstinately refused to allow shale drilling in the state, Access is building a new office building in Big Flats, NY, near Corning/Elmira. The location happens to be close to the PA border and of course Access will use the office as a regional HQ for its operations in northeastern PA. Access already has a presence in the Big Flats area and has had for several years. They’ve decided it’s time to build a new regional HQ and consolidate several locations into one. The point is, Access could just as easily have built their new building a few miles away in PA, which is what 99.9999999% of other industry-related companies have done (NY is the BIGGEST loser). However, Access decided to throw us NYers a bone and build their facility, employing 135 people, in our high tax, business-unfriendly and drilling hostile state. And so we say, thank you! And, are you crazy?!… Continue reading
We recently told you the story of why United Airlines was eliminating a daily flight between Cleveland and Oklahoma City, a move that may have an impact on Utica Shale development (see The Reason United Canceled Daily Flights Between Cleveland & OKC). Here’s a story on the other side of the isle: Delta is increasing the capacity of the jet it runs between the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport and Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. They’re going from a small regional 50-seater jet to an Airbus A319 which seats up to 156 passengers.
Some (many?) who work in the gas fields of northeast PA use the Atlanta connection to reach Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, so this good news means there’s more development opportunity for the Marcellus because more people can reach it faster from places like Texas and Oklahoma, where many PA drillers have their headquarters… Continue reading
It’s now clear that liberals and Democrats (usually the same) in PA are hellbent on imposing an extreme severance tax on the Marcellus drilling industry. Whether the seven townships that sued the state to overturn large portions of the Act 13 law (eventually winning) are part of the tax conspiracy–we don’t know. Whether intentional or not, the lawsuit by the towns has led to the current situation that a wise, circumspect and reasonable impact fee (instead of a tax that redistributes wealth to people who didn’t earn it) is now in jeopardy and likely a goner (see Happy Story Ends Badly Because of 7 PA Towns). So Libs and Dems, or LibDems, are now beating the drums: tax, tax, tax, tax. They’re actually happy that towns will lose out on millions of dollars of impact fee revenue because they want use it as a political issue–as an excuse to tax out the wazoo.
The sycophantic and slavish media has picked up the meme and LibDem editors are writing op-eds calling for a nosebleed severance tax–like the editors of the Scranton Times-Tribune. The TR editors say the PA state legislature, by not imposing a nosebleed severance tax, has been “coddling” the drilling industry. What they’ve been doing, sychophantic, slavish LibDem TR editors, is fostering an economic miracle happening in PA all around you–an economic miracle that’s the envy of the world! You’re now about to pee all over it and ruin it. Try boning up on an economics course sometime… Continue reading
None other than the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that in 2012 the single largest producer of so-called fugitive methane (CH4) that escapes into the atmosphere was not from landfills, like it used to be. It also was not from oil and gas drilling, as is falsely claimed by anti-drillers. Nope. The biggest producer of methane that steals away into the nighttime sky like a thief, rising to toast us all into marshmallows, is none other than cow burps. Which will of course send the global warming nutters into a tissy, demanding that farmers afix a breathalyzer over the mouths of cows to monitor and capture all of that fugitive, evil methane. Watch out farmers–the nutters are coming for you!
Here’s the story of those impolite cows and their burping, farting ways… Continue reading