GreenHunter Sues 2 Former VPs + OH Competitor for Conspiracy

lawsuit8/4/17: There is an important update to this story. The lawsuit brought by GreenHunter was dismissed in June 2017. Please see this post for more details: GreenHunter Lawsuit Against Former Employees Dismissed.

A lawsuit filed by GreenHunter Resources against two former vice presidents of the company is just coming to light. On October 15 GreenHunter filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Ohio against John Jack, former vice president of Appalachia operations for GreenHunter, and against Rick Zickefoose, former vice president and operations manager at GreenHunter. The lawsuit also names Dean Grose, CEO of Comtech Industries and a principle with Water Energy Services–both competitors of GreenHunter. The lawsuit alleges that Jack and Zickefoose shared company secrets with a competitor and then left to work for that competitor, damaging GreenHunter in the process. Some of those secrets–a key part of it–dealt with GreenHunter’s talks with the U.S. Coast Guard over barging brine down the Ohio River…
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Noble Energy 3Q15: Marcellus Prod. Up 50%, 1st Utica Well Drilled

but wait there's moreNoble Energy is a global driller involved in a number of shale plays in the U.S. including the DJ Basin, Eagle Ford Shale, Delaware Basin and Marcellus Shale. Noble idled the last remaining drilling rig they were operating in the Marcellus in September (see Noble Energy to Idle Remaining Marcellus Rig Next Month). Even so, they had a banner third quarter in the Marcellus. Noble issued their third quarter update yesterday and although the section on their Marcellus operations is brief (read it all below), it packs a punch. Even with reducing rigs to zero, Noble completed and brought online their first Utica Shale well (in Marshall County, WV). Noble’s production volumes in the Marcellus in 3Q15 rocketed to 493 million cubic feet of natural gas equivalent per day (MMcfe/d), more than a 50% increase over 3Q14 numbers. But wait, there’s more!…
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Dominion 3Q15: Progress on Atlantic Coast Pipeline, Cove Point LNG

progressYesterday Dominion, a huge utility/pipeline company operating in 13 states and organized into multiple corporations, released their third quarter 2015 update. Frankly, the official press release was pretty boring and short–concentrating on the financials. Our chief interest is on the operations side–tell us about the projects under way. So we went trolling through a transcript of yesterday’s investors conference call and sure enough, came up with gold. Tom Farrell, CEO of Dominion, had quite a bit to say in his prepared remarks about the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, the Cove Point LNG export plant, and even about “farmouts” of Utica acreage. Farrell said that surveying is 85% complete for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, and engineering is 75% complete with some contracts for pipe already awarded. Farrell said that overall, the Cove Point project is now 47% done and there are 1,300 workers on site now. Exciting! But what’s this business about farmouts?…
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Stone Energy 3Q15: Shut Down 110 Mmcfe/d of Marcellus Production

shutdownStone Energy, an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company (E&P) headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana drills mainly in the Gulf of Mexico but also has a presence in the Marcellus/Utica Shale. Earlier this year the company released the one active Marcellus rig they were running and said they would not resume drilling in the northeast until receiving a hybrid rig in late 2015/early 2016 that can drill both Marcellus and Utica wells (see Stone Energy 1Q15: No New Marcellus Drilling, But More Production). In September Stone said they were shutting in most of their production in the Marcellus/Utica (see Stone Energy Shuts in Most of their WV NatGas Production). And indeed they did. Yesterday Stone released their third quarter 2015 update and it shows the company turned off the spigots in their northeast operations, cutting out all 100-110 million cubic feet equivalent per day (Mmcfe/d) of production in what they call their Mary field. The company continued to produce 20-25 Mmcfe/d from their Heather and Buddy fields (in the Marcellus). Here’s the latest update from Stone Energy…
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Rex Energy 3Q15: Production Up 14% from 3Q14, Down 6% from 2Q15

missing puzzle pieceRex Energy, a pure play driller focused totally on the Marcellus/Utica, released their third quarter production and price realizations update yesterday. It is a short update (below) that does not include Rex’s financials. We’ve seen this with a few companies–they release what is typically the “good news” first and then the other shoe drops a few weeks later. So we’ll keep a sharp eye out for Rex’s financial update when that gets published. In the meantime, Rex’s production in 3Q15 was up 14% from 3Q14, but down slightly–6%–from 2Q15 (last quarter). Rex explains why…
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Marshall County Commissioner Still Opposes $615M Electric Plant

say what you meanIn August 2014 the Marshall County, WV board of commissioners (a 3-person board) voted to approve a plan to build a Marcellus Shale-powered electric plant in the county (see Marshall County Votes to Accept Gas-Powered Electric Plant). The vote was a bit complicated. In a nutshell, Moundsville Power, a company owned by developers from Buffalo, NY, proposed a deal to the county. They want to build a 549-megawatt plant costing $615 million. But if Moundsville owns the plant, it’s subjected to high property taxes. Moundsville proposed selling the plant to the county but running it for them. In essence the county will own the plant on paper. Because it’s county owned, no property taxes! However, Moundsville would make rental payments to the county–or payments in lieu of taxes (PILOT). The payments would not be as much as if it were taxed–about $13 million less over 30 years. But the county still gets $31 million over those 30 years–and $31M is a whole lot better than $0. Moundsville would not have built the plant at all if not for the PILOT arrangement. One of the three commissioners, Bob Miller, voted against the plan. Now he’s trying to convince the state legislature to overturn the PILOT plan, although he says he still wants the deal with Moundsville to go forward…
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WVU Professor “All In” on Obama’s Coal-Killing Clean Power Plan

James Van Nostrand
James Van Nostrand

When liberal Democrat James Van Nostrand, director for West Virginia University’s Center for Energy and Sustainable Development, associate professor of law at West Virginia University, and a man-made global warming Kool Aid drinker addressed a recent forum at Wheeling Jesuit University, he told the audience they should just accept President Obama’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) and its death sentence for the coal industry. He essentially said “just get over it and move on. Lie down and admit defeat.” It put a smile on Van Nostrand’s face that WV Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has appeared to cave and will pursue a plan to comply with our Dear Leader’s CPP directive, even though 26 states have sued to stop the plan, including WV (see 26 States Ask Federal Court to Shut Down Clean Power Plan Now). Here’s an overview of Van Nostrand’s “just admit you’ve been beaten” speech…
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New BP Technology Report Predicts O&G Supplies will Double by 2050

researchPeak Oil theorists like Art Berman won’t be happy with the latest report just published by oil giant BP. BP and other large energy companies publish annual energy outlook studies that we’ve highlighted in the past (see BP’s Annual Energy Report: Smallest Demand Increase since 1990s). For the first ever, BP has just published a report called the BP Technology Outlook (full copy below) that reveals much of their internal research on new technologies that will keep energy supplies plentiful and affordable, “enough to meet projected demand many times over” according to the study’s authors. While BP pays much lip service to so-called renewable sources of energy in this new study, here’s the part that will give Berman and other Peak Oil fanatics heartburn: “applying today’s best technologies to discover oil and gas resources could significantly increase ‘proved reserves’ from 2.9 trillion barrels of oil equivalent to 4.8 trillion barrels – nearly double the 2.5 trillion barrels required to meet projected cumulative global demand through to 2050.” Did you catch that? New tech available today can and will double the amount of recoverable oil and gas. So much for Peak Oil and Gas! We’re awash in it and will remain so for generations…
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