Talk of Upstate NY Seceding & Joining PA Comes Roaring Back to Life

secedeThis story comes right from MDN’s own backyard–in the Town of Windsor, NY. Following Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to temporarily ban shale drilling while he’s in the governor’s chair, there was talk that some New York towns along the border of Pennsylvania are considering seceding from NY State and joining PA (see 15 NY Towns Consider Seceding from NY, Join PA Due to Frack Ban). It was certainly good for a few headlines–the story actually got international play for a while. But then it all seemed to simmer down. The “secession” story has now come roaring back to life with a proposal by a Windsor man (and MDN acquaintance) who is pushing a plan to split NY in two–and have all of upstate NY join Pennsylvania–not just a few towns. He’s even got a proposed platform and he’s working to organize a secession convention! Is this for real? Or is it a stunt–a clever way to focus attention on the abuse of upstate residents at the hands of a corrupt governor? You decide…
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Philly Area Dem State Senator Introduces Plan to Tax Pipelines

State Senator Andy Dinniman, Democrat from Chester (Delaware County), PA, has just introduced a new bill in the PA Senate that would require natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGL) pipelines to pay local and school property taxes in the Keystone State. His rationale is that pipelines should be required to help the communities that they affect (by traversing) in the same way the impact fee helps communities where drilling takes place. Good idea, or bad?…
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How the Wolf Administration is Cooking the Marcellus Jobs Numbers

Wow, did MDN peg it right or what? Yesterday we told you that Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration/gang had politically, arbitrarily, rejiggered the Marcellus Shale industry employment numbers, dumping 151,000 jobs credited to the industry, in an attempt to smear the “brand” of the Marcellus as a jobs creator in the minds of Pennsylvanians (see Gov Wolf & Co Wipes Away 151K PA Jobs by Changing Formula). Our view was confirmed by a former Corbett administration official who exposes this numbers change-up for what it is: 100% political and 100% the work of the Wolf administration. Writing in the Harrisburg Patriot-News, Dennis Roddy calls out the Dept. of Labor and Industry for bowing to political pressure from the Wolf gang and arbitrarily changing the formula used to track direct, indirect and induced jobs from the Marcellus–a jobs formula accepted by economists across the country and a formula the Dept. of Labor and Industry themselves devised–not one devised by the Corbett administration…
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More Utica Drilling on the Way in Washington County, OH?

We’re always on the lookout for signals–little things that we notice that may indicate where drilling will increase or decrease. We think we’ve found another one. EdgeMarc Energy is a small driller headquartered in the Pittsburgh area, formed in 2012. The company, according to their website, now has 50,000 acres leased in the Marcellus and Utica Shales. In checking our Marcellus and Utica Shale Databook series, we’ve not found a single permit issued to EdgeMarc, ever, but we have found a reference on MDN to a joint venture with Magnum Hunter Resources (see Magnum Hunter JV Deal with EdgeMarc to Drill 1,080 Acres in OH). EdgeMarc’s jv with MHR is interesting because the 1,080 acres targeted for jv drilling are in Washington County, Ohio, a county that has seen some, but not a lot, of Utica Shale drilling in the past (an average of 1 permit a month). Here’s the signal we’ve found that perhaps EdgeMarc, or jv partner Magnum Hunter, is about to ramp up more drilling in Washington County, Ohio…
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PA DEP Sec Quigley Creating His Own FracFocus; SRBC in Crosshairs

crosshairsMore antagonism for the oil and gas industry, and more radical environmentalist philosophy, from the new PennFuture Secretary of the Dept. of Environmental Protection in Pennsylvania, John Quigley. (Once again, you have these Republicans to “thank” for his appointment: List of Republican Senators Who Voted to Confirm Quigley @ DEP). Last night Quigley announced at a radical enviro dinner in Philadelphia, hosted by the Pennsylvania Environmental Council, that although under the Act 13 law all Marcellus drillers must file a list of the chemicals used at each well site with the national registry FracFocus.org, that’s not good enough for Quigley. The Act 13 law also requires drillers to file the info with the PA DEP, so Quigley has decided the DEP will create it’s own online database/website to show the information (wasting taxpayer’s money). It’s all about being more “transparent” according to Quigley. We’d say it’s all about being a control freak, but we digress. Quigley also reiterated his absolute faith in the man-made global warming fairy tale, and he has ominously set his sites on the SRBC in northeastern PA…
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FWAP Asks SEC to Investigate GreenHunter for False Statements

The anti-fossil fuelers are getting desperate. They’re concerned that GreenHunter Resources, a fresh water and frack wastewater company operating in the Marcellus/Utica, may actually pull it off and begin to barge frack wastewater (brine, actually) down the Ohio River. MDN was the first to disclose that GreenHunter is going to push back against the ongoing delays coming from the Obama White House in pressuring the U.S. Coast Guard to delay granting permission to GreenHunter to barge brine. We analyzed and told you what’s happening–that GreenHunter is using the Coast Guard’s own regulations from 1987 against them, using the definition of oilfield wastes to apply to brine from shale wells (see GreenHunter/Coast Guard War of Words — MDN Explains It). Essentially GreenHunter is daring the Coast Guard to take them to court to try and stop them (a brilliant move). GreenHunter says they will begin barging in three months’ time (see GreenHunter Says OH River Wastewater Barging to Begin September). Along comes the virulent anti-drilling organization FreshWater Accountability Project (FWAP, which we pronounce “fuh-wop”) with their own twist to try and stop GreenHunter. FWAP has asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to investigate GreenHunter for making false statements to investors about their permission (or lack thereof) to begin barge shipments of brine…
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Rex Energy Sells Keystone Water Subsidiary to American Water Works

In April MDN told you that Rex Energy was shopping its 60% ownership of Keystone Clearwater Solutions, the company’s water service subsidiary (see Rex Energy: 1Q15 Production Up 60%; Still Selling Keystone Clearwater). Rex has found a buyer and is selling to American Water Works (AWW). AWW is buying the whole enchilada, not just Rex’s part, for $130 million. Rex’s portion of the sale price will be $66 million, which Rex plans to use to pay down debt and for “general corporate purposes”…
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OH Injection Well Operator has Until Today to File Remediation Plan

We’ve been following the story of water contamination in close proximity to five injection wells owned by Kleese Development Associates (KDA) of Warren, OH. The wells were shut down when water contamination was found in a local wetland (swamp) and a nearby pond. But after investigating, the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources (ODNR) found that the injection wells were not the source of chemical contamination, but rather a salvage yard was at fault (see Trumbull Injection Wells NOT the Source of Wetland Contamination). The salvage yard is also owned by KDA, so the company is certainly not off the hook. The last word we had was that the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) along with the Ohio Attorney General’s office executed search warrants for KDA looking for evidence of “environmental crimes” (see Youngstown Injection Wells Previously Shut Down Resume Operation). Meanwhile, the injection wells were reportedly restarted after correcting an issue found by the ODNR when they were there investigating. The new news is that Ohio EPA (not the feds, but Ohio) says KDA has until today to file a remediation plan to clean up a local creek affected by the so-far still undetermined source of a chemical spill coming from the salvage yard…
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New Coalition of Same Old Antis Opposes Atlantic Coast Pipeline

A small group of partisan, liberal, left-wing Democrats pretending to be a huge group of “concerned residents” from “Virginia and West Virginia” have formed a self-important group called Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance to oppose the 550-mile, $5 billion Dominion Atlantic Coast Pipeline project that will run from West Virginia into Virginia (benefiting the residents of both states) and on into North Carolina. MDN told you earlier this week about a group of RINOs and Democrats working together–wealthy gentry class landowners–working to stop the Atlantic Coast Pipeline from traversing their horse farms (see Virginia RINOs in League with Dems to Stop Atlantic Coast Pipeline). That group, called “All Pain No Gain”, is not among the members of Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance. This new coalition or group of groups is, in typical fashion, against all proposed routes for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. It is an unreasonable and irrational fossil fuel-hating position–being “reported” by “news organizations” like the Associated Press as just an ordinary group of concerned citizens with legitimate concerns. It’s NOTHING of the sort…
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