Lordstown, OH Gas-Powered Electric Plant Gets New Owners

Two SGT6-8000H gas turbines will be installed in the Lordstown Energy Center.
Two SGT6-8000H gas turbines will be installed in the Lordstown Energy Center.

UPDATE: After posting this story, MDN received a tip from a subscriber with knowledge of the Lordstown project that our assumption that Clean Energy Future didn’t have the necessary funds to finish the project was incorrect. The plan from the beginning was to bring in other big-money partners. In fact, Siemens was a partner in the project from the start. Thank you to our great MDN audience for setting the record straight!

In April 2014, MDN told you about a proposal from Clean Energy Future to build an $800 million electric generation plant in Lordstown (Trumbull County), OH. The plant will be fired by natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus (see Clean Energy Plans NatGas Electric Generation Plant in Lordstown). In May, Lordstown Village Council gave their blessing for the project (see Lordstown $800M Gas-Powered Electric Plant Gets Village Approval). And last September the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) gave its stamp of approval on the project (see Lordstown $800M Gas-Powered Electric Plant Gets OH State Approval). The project, at that point, had all necessary approvals. It was/is “shovel ready.” The only thing left to do was to begin construction. Except…it appears the project didn’t have enough money to start. That’s now changed. Yesterday Macquarie Infrastructure Partners III and Siemens Financial Services announced they will build the new facility. Which means they now own the majority share of the project because they will ponying up the necessary money to build it. Which means there was an agreement to buy it from Clean Energy Future, although Clean Energy will “retain an interest” in the project. Here are the details, including what kind of turbines and generators will be used to power the Lordstown plant…
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Merger Turns Sour: Williams Sues ETE/CEO Kelcy Warren

It was a long courting period before Energy Transfer Equity finally cajoled, harangued, and eventually forced the board of Williams to agree to a merger/takeover. ETE’s billionaire CEO Kelsy Warren revealed he had been propositioning Williams for over six months–offering Williams $64 per share to buy the company, totaling $48 billion (see Energy Transfer Makes “Indecent Proposal” to Buy Williams for $48B). Williams resisted, but eventually they caved and agreed to the deal–although the deal price went down $10 billion by the time they accepted (see Williams Accepts ETE’s “Indecent Proposal” – Price Went Down $10B). But things changed. Prices for natural gas (and oil) went into the basement, and ETE/Kelsy Warren had second thoughts (see ETE Wants Out of Williams Merger/Takeover, Offering $2B Breakup Fee). Yesterday Williams sued ETE and Kelsy Warren over ETE’s issuance of private shares to select investors to help finance the deal, and they sued Warren for “interfering” with the merger by issuing said private shares. The upshot seems to be Williams feels as though their shareholders are getting shafted. Williams wants the deal done, and they want to get the agreed-to amount. That’s why they’re suing. ETE disputes Williams’ claims and says they will “vigorously defend” themselves. Looks like this marriage is already turning sour…
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Obama DOJ Sues to Block Halliburton/Baker Hughes Merger

That didn’t take long. Yesterday MDN told you that sources in the Obama Dept. of Justice (DOJ) were leaking to the press that they would soon file a lawsuit against the Halliburton/Baker Hughes merger, in order to block it (see DOJ “Preparing Lawsuit” Against Halliburton/BH – Deal Looks Dead). They did. Yesterday the DOJ filed to block the merger saying the “merger would eliminate significant head-to-head competition in oilfield services industry.” Halliburton and Baker Hughes were quick to respond saying they will “vigorously contest the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) effort to block [the] pending merger.” Bring on the lawyers! Halliburton/BH say the DOJ has “reached the wrong conclusion in its assessment of the transaction and that its action is counterproductive, especially in the context of the challenges the U.S. and global energy industry are currently experiencing.” Here’s the dueling press releases issued yesterday…
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PA DEP Reignites Initiative re Inspections/Compliance/Enforcement

On Tuesday the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) issued an ambiguous, slightly threatening-sounding announcement about “restarting a process” that will lead to more consistency with “inspections, compliance and enforcement activities.” The announcement does not specifically mention the oil and gas industry, but o&g is a large part of what the DEP does–so presumably this is a new effort to clamp down on drillers and midstream companies. How will the DEP become more “consistent” with inspections and compliance and enforcement? That’s left unsaid. The DEP says it is conducting an “internal review” now, to be completed in May. They promise a coming public notice and comment period this summer…
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JLE Industries Launches Huge New Pipe/Casing Facility in WV

Sponsored Post: MDN is proud to introduce our audience to a new advertiser: JLE Industries. JLE recently opened a new intermodal, 80,000 square foot facility in Benwood (Marshall County), WV to work on pipes and casings used in drilling. Until now, if a driller had a problem that required a casing to be reworked, there were only a handful of machine shops available. Typically the driller would send the work out of the region, slowing progress (time is money!). With the new Benwood location, JLE has a state-of-the-art facility in the heart of the Marcellus/Utica. Faster turnaround, top notch equipment, great folks to work with. What’s not to love! Below is a description of the services offered by JLE at their new facility, along with a personal invitation from MDN to visit them during an open house to be held on April 15 (Friday) from noon to 10pm…
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Warren Resources Preps for Bankruptcy, New Role for CEO

We’ve heard of a Chief Executive Officer (CEO), a Chief Operating Officer (COO), Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and Chief Risk Officer (CRO). But until now, we’d never heard of a Chief Restructuring Officer. Somebody who’s full-time job it is to work on keep the company from shutting its doors and liquidating the assets. Warren Resources has just appointed it’s current CEO and President, James Watt, as the company’s Chief Restructuring Officer. In February MDN reported that Warren–a small, independent exploration and production company with an ongoing drilling programs in California, Wyoming, and in the northeast Pennsylvania Marcellus Shale–had missed a $7.5 million payment (see Warren Resources: Potential Bankruptcy, No Drilling in 2016). At the time, Warren said if the company could not come to a workable agreement regarding an out-of-court restructuring, it would have to seek protection from its creditors through a bankruptcy proceeding. In Warren’s announcement yesterday, they once again warned of potential bankruptcy–for the third time. Without saying outright “we’re about to file for bankruptcy,” the company issued a very clear and loud signal that’s just what they’re about to do…
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Halcon Update on “Charting a New Course” – I Feel Good!

In March MDN reported Halcon Resources had hired a prominent law firm with a specialty in bankruptcies to assist the company to “chart a course” through the current downturn in gas and oil prices (see Halcon Resources Hires Bankruptcy Law Firm to Help “Chart Course”). Yesterday Halcon issued an update on their progress. According to the update, the company is “in discussions” with “certain stakeholders” to negotiate terms of a “potential transaction” to “materially reduce the Company’s indebtedness.” What does all of that coded language mean? You would think the company whose CEO is famous for his blunt language would just spit it out (see Halcon CEO Says No More S***** Wells in Northern OH Utica). We’re left to wonder…
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U.S. Chemical Industry Investment Linked to Shale Gas Tops $164B!

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) participated in a Hudson Institute event yesterday. During a presentation made by the ACC, they announced that U.S. chemical industry investment linked to plentiful and affordable natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs) from shale formations has reached an astonishing $164 billion. Some 40% of that investment is for the 264 projects – new facilities, expansions and factory re-starts – that is either completed or underway. Another 55% are for projects in the planning phase. This is a big deal folks. ACC’s research shows the investments tied to shale will lead to $105 billion per year in new chemical industry output and support 738,000 permanent new jobs across the U.S. economy by 2023–including 69,000 new chemical industry jobs, 357,000 jobs in supplier industries and 312,000 jobs in communities where workers spend their wages. Below we have a variety of resources for you. We have the ACC announcement with many interesting facts and figures. We also have a fact sheet summarizing their research, a copy of the slide deck used for the presentation (with really cool slides), and a copy of a study the ACC published in 2013 with a list of the companies who, at that time, had announced major downstream projects using shale-related natural gas and liquids…
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NY Antis Attempt to Stop Pilgrim Pipelines with Local Bans

“Whoa, take ‘er easy there, Pilgrim.” – John Wayne in the movie “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance” (1962) In November, MDN told you about Pilgrim Pipeline Holdings, developing an East Coast pipeline to carry refined petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel, heating oil, and jet and aviation fuel northbound from Linden, New Jersey to Albany, New York (178 miles). In addition, a second Pilgrim pipeline will carry crude oil from Albany south to NJ and other locations. Two pipelines, side by side, liquids flowing through them in different directions (see Will Pilgrim Pipeline be Allowed to Settle in the NY World?). Anti fossil fuel nutters who infest New York State are, however, attempting to block both pipelines by using a 107 year-old law and local bans. Will the antis succeed yet again?…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Thu, Apr 7, 2016

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Let’s get ready to RUMA; when the fracking boom goes bust; FL LNG plant delayed; steady flows going to Sabine Pass LNG; new well drilling down 70% in 1Q16; Chesapeake needs higher prices to hold on; EPA’s Gina McCarthy ramming through methane rules; and more!
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