Third Time the Charm? Hilcorp PA Hearing on Forced Pooling Resched

In Pennsylvania, there is no forced pooling law for Marcellus Shale wells. Forced pooling laws typically say if a majority of landowners are leased in a drilling unit (640 acres, or one square mile), the driller can “force” the other landowners not signed to allow drilling under (not on) their land. However, there’s a loophole in PA for Utica wells. Because Utica wells sit below the Onondaga formation, a 1961 PA law allows forced pooling for Utica wells. Hilcorp is attempting to use that loophole in Lawrence County, PA to force a few recalcitrant landowners to allow drilling (see Hilcorp Lawrence County, PA Forced Pooling Case Update). Hearings on Hilcorp’s forced pooling request have been scheduled and canceled–twice (first in March, then in May). We now have a third date for the hearings–in September…

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