Free/Accurate Online Royalty Calculator for OH Utica Wells

cool toolsA cool new online tool has just been released for landowners (and nosy neighbors) who want to calculate estimated royalties for any individual Utica Shale well in Ohio–with a reasonably high degree of accuracy. The tool is called the Ohio Shale Well Royalty Calculator and was created by WellRev Ohio LLC–a Canton, OH company that specializes in assisting county auditors, school districts and local governments calculate tax revenue from oil and gas wells. Below is a link to the new calculator along with MDN’s brief instruction guide for how to use it…
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George Soros Finally Bullies Penn Virginia into Selling Itself

no bullyingBillionaire bully George Soros, the guy who bankrolls just about anything liberal and Democrat has, for years, played both sides of the fence when it comes to the issue of shale drilling (see George Soros Plays Both Sides of Fracking Issue, for Profit). We told you one year ago that Soros had taken a major position in exploration & production (E&P) Penn Virginia (see Penn Virginia the Latest Plaything for Billionaire George Soros). Penn Virginia has a small position in the Marcellus Shale, only 21,700 net acres with no drilled wells. We said the following last March: “Why did he invest? To instill good LibDem values like lifetime employment, free condoms, etc. in the capitalist heathens at the company? Nope. Soros invested $29.1 million in Penn Virginia, grabbing a 9.1% ownership, so he can force them to sell themselves.” What is the Wall Street Journal reporting now? Penn Virginia is shopping for a buyer because they’re being forced to by Soros. It took nearly a year, but Soros got his way in the end. Some people buy and flip houses or buy and flip cars for profit. Soros, playing with the lives of everyone employed at a company, buys and flips companies like Penn Virginia–just to make a buck…
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EnLink OH Condensate Pipe in Trouble? Open Season Extended Again

EnLink Midstream is clearly having trouble getting enough business to justify building a new condensate pipeline in Ohio. In August 2014, EnLink announced a new 45-mile condensate pipeline that will stretch across Guernsey, Noble and Washington counties in Ohio (see EnLink Midstream Announces New Condensate Pipeline in ORV). The project, which connects to another EnLink pipeline in Washington County, is called the Ohio River Valley Pipeline, or ORV. In mid-December, EnLink launched a 30-day binding open season for shippers to sign up for capacity on the new pipeline (see EnLink Launches 1 Month Open Season for ORV Condensate Pipeline). An open season is the time when shippers sign on the dotted line and commit to paying for and using the pipeline when it’s built. If EnLink doesn’t get enough customers, they won’t build it. In January EnLink announced there were extending the open season another six weeks (see EnLink Extends Open Season for OH Condensate Pipeline by 6 Weeks). Those six weeks have come and gone, and guess what? EnLink has just announced they’re extending the open season again, another six weeks…
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Majority of PA Voters DON’T Support a New Severance Tax Right Now

The results of a recent poll conducted of PA voters, paid for by the Marcellus Shale Coalition, is (in our opinion) being misreported. The headlines, which all seem to quote a single story in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, claim that a “majority” of PA voters support slapping a new tax on shale drillers. That’s not how we read the results…
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Southwestern Energy: Great 2014, Even Better 2015 On the Way

Southwestern Energy released their full year 2014, fourth quarter 2014 and preview of 2015 big kahuna update last Thursday. There is a LOT in there. With the purchase of 413,000 Marcellus/Utica Shale acres from Chesapeake along with a boatload of operating and partially-drilled wells, Southwestern is now one of the top 3 or 4 drillers in the Marcellus region (see Chesapeake Sells Close to 25% of Marcellus/Utica Operation). Even before adding the new acreage, Southwestern was going great guns last year. In 2014, Southwestern invested $695 million in Northeast Appalachia, which included $571 million to spud 99 operated wells. Southwestern’s net gas production from Northeast Appalachia was 254 Bcf in 2014, up 69% from 151 Bcf in 2013. Gross operated production in Northeast Appalachia was over 1.0 Bcf per day at the end of 2014 compared to approximately 700 MMcf per day at the end of 2013. They didn’t do much in Southwest Appalachia, as they call it (which means SW PA, WV & eastern OH). That will change this year–dramatically. Spending last year for the NE Marcellus was $695 million. This year it will be $700 million. Spending last year in the SW Marcellus was $4 million. This year? They’re going to spend big money on their newly acquired acreage from Chesapeake: $520 million. Southwestern is whacking their spending in other shale plays like the Fayettville–cutting it in half–so they can invest in the Marcellus…
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Williams Goes Shopping for $3B, Floating Notes to Pay Down Debt

It’s not every day you go shopping…for 3 BILLION dollars. But that’s what Williams is doing. Williams recently consummated a deal to buy Access Midstream, formerly known as Chesapeake Midstream (see Big News: Williams Partners Buying Access Midstream for $6B). Although we’ve also read it was the other way round–that Access swallowed Williams. At any rate, the combined companies, with major operations in the Marcellus and Utica Shale region, have a staggering value of $50 billion (see Deal Details for Williams/Access Midstream Merger – TTV of $50B!). The wedding was Feb 2 and the happy couple need money–fast. So Williams (which is the name plate on the door) has gone shopping for $3B. They’re floating new notes (i.e. debts, or IOUs) in order to, yes, pay down older debts…
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CSSD Expands Certification Standard to Include Wastewater Disposal

The Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD) has popped back into the news. The CSSD is an effort by both the drilling industry and environmental groups to craft a set of standards that both sides can support resulting in (for those companies who follow the standards)–a sort of Underwriters Laboratory “seal of approval” certification. You can boil it down to an effort to, “Can’t we all just get along?” As MDN has chronicled over the past two years since it was launched in March 2013, it’s been a rocky start for the CSSD (see MDN’s string of stories on the CSSD here). MDN has been critical of the organization from the beginning, although lately we’ve begun to warm to the organization and its mission. We’ve spoken in person with both the former executive director of the CSSD, Andrew Place (from EQT) and the current executive director, Susan LeGros. They both make a compelling case for the organization. LeGros and the CSSD announced last week they have, for the first time, expanded one of their 15 standards to include guidelines for what happens to frack wastewater after it has left the drilling site…
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Major Improvements Coming to Fracking Chemical Database FracFocus

FracFocus is the national hydraulic fracturing chemical registry. Some 20 states now use it to fully disclose the fracking chemicals used at each and every shale well drilled. Want to know what chemicals were used to drill a specific well near you? Head to FracFocus.org and you’ll quickly find the answer. FracFocus, supported by the industry, is managed by the Ground Water Protection Council and the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, two organizations whose missions both revolve around conservation and environmental protection. Anti-drillers don’t like FracFocus because it publishes the truth about chemicals used in fracking–it ain’t all that much and it ain’t killin’ people. Therefore, anti-drillers look to denigrate the good work being done by FracFocus (don’t listen to their lies). More good news: Even though it’s just four years old, FracFocus continues to innovate and update. In 2015 they’re rolling out several major new improvements…
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New Research: Shale Drilling has Enormous Benefits for Economy

A new research paper recently published by researchers at the University of Wyoming takes a close look at the economic benefits and potential pitfalls of shale drilling. The paper, titled “The Economics of Shale Gas Development” (full copy below) was accepted last November for publication later this year in the Annual Review of Resources Economics. The upshot of the paper is this: there are ENORMOUS economic benefits from shale drilling–and we’ll realize those benefits as long as we don’t screw it up. That is, we need to be mindful of, and careful to manage, the environmental impacts from drilling…
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A Picture of a “Peaceful” Protester “Targeted” by the Evil Gas Industry

Three weeks ago we told you about Wendy Lee, a Marxist professor at Bloomsburg University (Columbia County, PA) who feels like she’s being singled out for scrutiny by law enforcement authorities because of her protest activities against shale gas drilling (see Anti-Drillers Don’t Like Being Considered Suspects in Crimes). A PA State Trooper showed up on her doorstep a year ago to ask her some uncomfortable questions. She’s still spitting and sputtering about it a year later, even though she was never arrested nor even accused of anything. Lee maintains she’s just an aw shucks peaceful protester and the big, evil, nasty drilling industry is trying to silence her with scare tactics. Just one teeny tiny problem with her contention that she’s “just a peaceful protester.” In this case, a picture is truly worth a thousand words…
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