Competitors Rice Energy & Gulfport Form $640M Utica Midstream JV

joint ventureYesterday Rice Energy announced that the company’s subsidiary, Rice Midstream, has signed a joint venture agreement with competitor Gulfport Energy to develop a pipeline gathering and water delivery system for Gulfport’s Utica Shale drilling program in Ohio’s eastern Belmont County and Monroe County. Rice will be 75% owner and in charge of the jv. Rice and Gulfport plan to invest a combined $640 million into the jv over the next six years. Construction begins immediately and the first gas (and water) will begin to flow through the new system by middle of next year. Here’s the details…
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New $1.1B Utica-Powered Electric Plant Coming to Columbiana County

electricityAdvanced Power Services announced yesterday they will build a second mega-electric generating plant that taps into and uses Ohio’s Utica Shale. This new plant will generate a whopping 1,100 megawatts of electricity and be located in Columbiana County, OH. Advanced just broke ground in July on a 700-megawatt plant in Carroll County (see $800M Utica Gas-Fired Electric Plant Breaks Ground in Carroll Cnty). This new/second project by Advanced, which is being built by subsidiary company South Field Energy, will be the seventh such project to be announced for Ohio (see List of 6 New Natural Gas-Fired Electric Plants Coming to Ohio). The new 1,100-megawatt plant will cost $1.1 billion to build, employing 550 people for up to three years to build it. Here’s the details of the project…
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PA Legislature to Gov Wolf: We’ll Craft Budget Without You

without youOn Wednesday Pennsylvania Gov. Wolf got his wish to have an up or down vote on his latest high tax budget proposal and it went to down in flames (see PA Gov Wolf’s High Tax Budget Goes Down to Defeat – 9 Dems Against). So now both Republicans AND Democrats in the PA legislature (Senate and House) have agreed to hold the next round of budget talks without Wolf, because he’s not being an adult. It’s the ultimate humiliation when your own party won’t listen to you any more and begins to govern without you, but that’s the situation in the Keystone State. We’re still not out of the high Marcellus Shale severance tax woods yet, but cracks of sunshine are appearing that there will be no severance tax in this year’s budget…
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PA Gov Wolf Signs Acid Mine Water for Fracking Law

it's a miracleIt’s a miracle! Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf actually did something right–he signed Senate Bill (SB) 875 into law yesterday. You may recall on Tuesday we told you that the PA Senate and House had passed SB875 and sent it on to Wolf for his signature (see PA Acid Mine Water Bill Passes, Waiting for Gov. Wolf’s Signature). The bill legally protects Marcellus Shale drillers should they decide to use acid mine water (AMW) as a source of water for fracking. Anti-drilling groups will only be too happy to launch frivolous lawsuits against drillers should they use AMW. This bill prevents those shenanigans from happening. It is a win/win for the environment–helping to lessen the amount of fresh water needed in fracking, and cleaning up a huge problem in the state of millions of gallons of AMW flowing out of abandoned coal mines. Congratulations to State Senator Camera Bartolotta (Republican) for writing and sponsoring the bill, and for making it happen. Too bad she isn’t the governor of PA right now…
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New Junk Science Claims PA Fracking Leads to Premature Births

junk scienceIn January 2014, anti-drilling “researchers” jumped the gun at the annual meeting of the American Economic Association in Philadelphia by announcing “preliminary” results of research in which they claim they can show a connection between shale drilling and low birth weights in newborn babies in Pennsylvania (see Another Flawed Fracking/Health Study Emerges…from Economics Conf). The “researchers” quickly walked back the announcement they made at the conference because, well, because they hadn’t actually done the research yet (see Researchers Backpedal on Bloomberg Story about Fracking & Babies). Another group of “researchers” claims to have done the research (same set of data) and published a new study along the same lines last week in the journal Epidemiology. The conclusion? The closer you live to shale drilling activity in PA, the more likely your baby will born prematurely. The study, called “Unconventional Natural Gas Development and Birth Outcomes in Pennsylvania, USA,” was partially funded by the ultra-liberal Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and subjected to a sham peer review process to give it the veneer of respectability…
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Sierra Club Pres. Destroyed Under Questioning about Global Warming

empty headWe’ve written plenty over the years about the silly nutters who make up the Sierra Club. It’s a joke of an organization, and that was evident for the world to see earlier this week when U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz questioned the president of the Sierra Club, Aaron Mair, at a Congressional hearing. Using simple, direct and non-bullying questions, Cruz exposed Mair as an empty-headed fraud only capable of regurgitating a few canned responses to Cruz’s questions about man-made global warming. The standard line was to repeat over and over that “97 percent of scientists agree” on man-made global warming. That particular statistic comes from a small, flawed study of hand-picked scientists back in 2013. Mair and others hope by repeating the lie over and over enough times, everyone will believe it. Cruz didn’t fall for it. There is a video (below) that you MUST watch. It exposes Mair as a fool–not able to defend his own statements about global warming. Nearly every question Cruz asked Mair would have to lean back to have his advisers feed him the answers. Mair is an empty suit–nobody home upstairs. Empty-headed. It’s a beautiful example of the entire organization, showing it as nothing more than a political advocacy group, ignorant of real science. Yes, we do revisit the important topic of global warming from time to time because the issue is at the heart of the movement to ban fracking and end the use of all fossil fuels–a dangerously naive and stupid movement supported by organizations like the Sierra Club…
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Is PA Gov Wolf Targeting the Marcellus Industry for Extinction?

Daniel Markind
Daniel Markind

Is Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf actually *trying* to kill the Marcellus Shale industry? It’s not our question, but a serious question being asked by Dan Markind, a lawyer and partner with Weir & Partners in Philadelphia. In today’s guest post, Dan recounts Wolf’s actions during his first ten months in office and asks a serious question about what Wolf is trying to do to the Marcellus industry. Actions speak louder than words. [Incidentally, no one else seems to recall, but we do, that California billionaire and environmental activist Tom Steyer gave Wolf something like $14 million for his campaign (see CA Anti-Driller Tom Steyer Purchasing Tom Wolf PA Governorship). Perhaps Wolf is paying off his campaign debt to Steyer by targeting the Marcellus for extinction?]

Dan also updates us on the situation with the Constitution Pipeline–delayed by New York’s Dept. of Environmental Conservation; the Obama Administration’s decision to oppose ending a ban on crude oil exports; and a huge oil find in Israel, or is it really in Syria?…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Fri, Oct 9, 2015

best of the restThe “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: drilling continues to slow in Utica/Marcellus; Ascent tries to wiggle out of OH landowner lawsuit; NFG’s West Side Expansion pipeline goes online; Wolf passes out $8.1M of shale impact fee money; Kinder may change pipeline route (again) in NH; anti-drilling MA AG still trying to stop Kinder pipeline; VA ship builder converts to natgas; Boone Pickens admits oil price won’t hit $70 this year; FERC wants more pipelines; and more!
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