Aubrey McClendon Gets Back into the Midstream Business

getting the band back togetherIs Aubrey McClendon getting the band back together again? That is, is he re-creating Chesapeake Energy under the name of American Energy Partners? Perhaps! Yesterday McClendon’s AEP announced that AEP and their major backer Energy & Minerals Group (EMG) are forming a midstream subsidiary called American Energy – Midstream which will invest in pipelines and processing plants in those regions where AEP has active drilling operations–namely the Utica and Marcellus Shale…
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Shell Files IPO to Spin Off Midstream/Pipelines into MLP

While Aubrey McClendon and his financial partner EMG are getting back into the midstream/pipeline business (see today’s story about getting the band back together), Royal Dutch Shell is getting out of the midstream business. Well, not exactly getting out–but Shell announced yesterday that the company has filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission to create a pipeline subsidiary called Shell Midstream Partners. The new company would have a master limited partnership (MLP) structure, which floats something akin to, but different from, shares of stock. They’re called units and the reason for spinning it out as a separate company under the MLP banner is tax-related. According to the paperwork Shell has filed, they anticipate raising up to $750 million in unit sales. Will Shell, via this new subsidiary, own any pipelines in the Marcellus/Utica?…
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Marcellus/Utica Driller Eclipse Resources IPO Seeks $864M+

Just over a month ago MDN brought you the news that PA-based Marcellus/Utica driller Eclipse Resources would soon float an initial public offering (IPO) hoping to raise $100 million (see Utica Driller Eclipse Resources Files IPO – Wants to Raise $100M). It now appears the information in that story was off–way off. Earlier this month Eclipse launched their IPO by announcing they want to sell 30.3 million shares of common stock for $27-$30 per share. If you calculate they get $28.50, that would raise $864 million!…
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PA DEP Fines Carrizo $192K for 2 Incidents in Wyoming County

In Mach 2013 Carrizo Oil & Gas was fracking a Marcellus Shale well in Wyoming County, PA when they lost control of the well and wastewater and brine started coming out of the well faster than they could handle it–about 800 gallons a minute. Eventually about 200,000 gallons of wastewater and brine overflowed at the site (see Carrizo Problem Fracking NE PA Well, Evacuates 3 Nearby Families). About a month later, after investigating the damage, the state Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) allowed Carrizo to resume their fracking and drilling operations in that area (see Carrizo Resumes Fracking at Site of Spill in Wyoming County, PA). It’s now more than a year later and the DEP has just handed Carrizo a $192,044 fine for failing to keep control of the well, which resulted “in environmental degradation and the evacuation of citizens from their homes.” The fine also covers a second, much smaller incident that happened in April 2013…
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Court Says Range Resources Must Disclose Chemicals in SW PA

Three families who live near a former drill site and frack wastewater impoundment at the Yeager Marcellus Shale site in Washington County, PA sued Range Resources in May 2012 claiming the air they breathe and the water they drink had been contaminated by Range’s operation at the site (see EPA Investigating Range Drill Site in Western PA). Litigation ensued, and years passed. In November of last year, County Judge Debbie O’Dell Seneca gave Range and its contractors 30 days to cough up a list of all the chemicals ever used at the site, right down to the kind of oil used in the engines of vehicles visiting the site (see PA Judge Forces Range, Contractors to Provide Chemical List). That didn’t happen because Range appealed. Last week Range lost the appeal…
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Washington, PA Votes to Reject Marcellus Boarding House

You might think local politicians would be more than happy when someone buys a run down dump of a property with plans to turn it into nice housing. Such a plan would put it back on the tax roles, provide a shot of economic stimulus into the local economy, and help out the area’s strained rental property capacity. But if that housing will cater to Marcellus Shale workers and if you’re anti-drilling, as the politicians around the city of Washington, PA are, well then, you might just get your knickers in a twist (see Washington, PA Officials Try to Stop Marcellus Boarding House). Last month the owner of Phive Starr Properties had the temerity to tell Washington officials that their zoning rules have some big holes in them. Last night the board voted 3-2 to tell Phive Starr “Nah, we don’t have no holes, go away,” in so many words…
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Rockies Express Pipeline Reverses Flow from Utica to Midwest

Nearly a year ago MDN tipped you off that the Rockies Express (REX) Pipeline would reverse at least part of its flow and start sending natural gas from the Utica/Marcellus to the Midwest (see REX Reverses Pipeline Flow from OH for Mystery Utica Customer). That momentous day has arrived. As of today, a new 14.3-mile lateral is flowing gas north from the MarkWest Seneca natural gas processing plant to the REX mainline, where a newly built compressor station will allow the gas to be delivered to points west in Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. Eventually the gas may also go to Missouri…
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Fluid Delivery Solutions Gets New Owner: Trilantic Capital

Fluid Delivery Solutions LLC (FDS) is an oilfield water management company primarily delivering and storing fresh water to drillers in major shale plays, including the Marcellus and Utica. Yesterday FDS announced they have a new owner: Trilantic Capital Partners, a global private equity firm. The amount of the financial transaction was not disclosed. However, FDS current CEO Dan Dunkelberg and his existing management team will remain at the helm of FDS. So why sell?…
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Changing Chairs at PDC Energy: New President/CEO

PDC Energy is a driller in both the Utica and Marcellus Shale plays, as well as other plays in the U.S. Yesterday the company announced effective immediately they are promoting their COO and executive VP Barton Brookman to be president and CEO. Stepping down as head of the company is James Trimble, a position he’s held for the past three years. Trimble will remain on the board of directors. In reflecting on his tenture at the helm of PDC, Trimble says one of his proudest achievements is “initiating successful exploration in the Utica shale.” Here’s yesterday’s announcement of changing chairs at PDC…
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