NY Gov. Cuomo Refuses to Grant Permits for Constitution Pipeline

BullRingYou can’t see we didn’t predict this outcome: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has made the political decision to not grant the Constitution Pipeline stream crossing permits, temporarily stopping the project from advancing. Cuomo’s lackeys at the totally humiliated and discredited Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC) made the announcement on Friday, so-called Earth Day. Virulent anti-drillers erupted in spontaneous (and multiple) orgasms at the news. The DEC claims Williams, the builder of the Constitution, did not provide detailed information about pipe burial that the DEC had requested. This is a blatant, 100% lie. Gov. Cuomo is corrupt and is being led, as our friend Tom Shepstone points out, by the nose by Rockefeller money. Prosecutor Preet Bharara–are you paying attention? MDN now calls on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to bypass New York State, as is its right under the U.S. Constitution. FERC has the power to bypass Cuomo and the DEC and authorize the pipeline without NY’s stream crossing permits. Yes, hoops will need to be jumped through with various courts, but now is the time to permanently remove NY from such decision-making. The state has proven it is incapable of making independent, science-based decisions on the topic of oil and gas drilling and pipelines. Time to overrule the state and move on. Below we have the DEC’s pathetic political cover-up, along with various responses to the news…
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Range Exec Apologizes for Remark about Avoiding Wealthy Houses

Terry Bossert
Terry Bossert – Range Resources

Last week MDN told you of a concerted campaign by anti-drilling groups to use a dry and sarcastic remark made by one its executives to accuse of the company of avoiding drilling near “rich houses” and instead targeting “poor neighborhoods” for their drilling program (see Radical Groups Claim Range Resources Avoids Rich Neighborhoods). The executive who made the remark (taken out of context by the antis) has now apologized for that (boneheaded) remark, explaining it was a poor attempt at humor, to lighten up the audience. But antis insist they’re godlike with the ability to know what was in the head of the executive. Antis claim the comment was no joke…
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Marysville PA Talking w/Compass Natural Gas re “Virtual Pipeline”

virtual pipelineLast June MDN told you about Compass Natural Gas, a company that compresses natural gas and trucks it to locations not served by a pipeline, cool concept called a “virtual pipeline” (see Getting Marcellus NatGas to Customers without Pipelines). At the time we posted that story, Compass contacted MDN to state the company does not market or serve rural communities/end users, but rather manufacturers, fleets and businesses. It seems their marketing emphasis has changed. Marysville, in Perry County, PA (near Harrisburg) has no interstate pipeline nearby and only about 1% of Marysville’s residents and businesses use natural gas. The town is in talks with Compass to change that–by having Compass truck in CNG (compressed natural gas) for use by town residents and businesses. The town would, of course, need to install delivery pipelines. Right now Marysville is conducting a survey to see if residents would like to buy cheap, abundant, clean-burning (and home-grown) natural gas…
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WV Gov Tomblin Woos Japanese to Invest in State’s NatGas Industry

WV Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin
WV Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin

In 2013 West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin wooed the Brazilians into investigating and hopefully building a multi-billion dollar ethane cracker in his state (see WV Announces Brazilian Company to Build Ethane Cracker Complex). Odebrecht was supposed to build an ethane cracker near Parkersburg, WV’s third largest city. But then the bottom fell out of the market and Odebrecht’s plans have been shelved (see Odebrecht Pushes the Pause Button on WV Ethane Cracker). We won’t say the project is dead, but there haven’t been any brainwaves in months and the only thing keeping it alive is a respirator. Is that wily WV governor at it again? Last week Tomblin hosted a delegation from Japan, attempting to woo them into exploring “new investment opportunities in natural gas statewide.” What does that mean, exactly? Presentations were delivered by MarkWest and others. MarkWest has several natgas processing and NGL fractionation plants in the state. We know we’re reading between the lines here, but it sure sounds to us like Tomblin is trying to find someone else willing to build a cracker plant in the state…
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Even with No Drilling, Southwestern Continues to Renew WV Leases

southwestern energyIn a bit of encouraging “this too shall pass,” we spotted an article that says Southwestern Energy Company is actively renewing leases expiring in West Virginia. You may recall that in the fall of 2014 Southwestern purchased 413,000 Marcellus/Utica acres, most of it in West Virginia (see Chesapeake Sells Close to 25% of Marcellus/Utica Operation). In 2015 Southwestern was decidedly contrarian and expanded their drilling program when everyone else was scaling back (see Southwestern’s Contrarian Plan: Double Down on Drilling in the Marcellus). The plan worked, sort of. The company achieved record production in 2015, but they also achieved record losses (see Southwestern Energy 2015: Record Production, Big Paper Loss). Which led to Southwestern idling their rigs in the Marcellus/Utica in 2016 (see Southwestern Cuts 2016 Spending 80%, Idles Marcellus Rigs (for Now)). Many of the leases Southwestern purchased from Chessy are now expiring–it’s been five years. The good news is that even though Southwestern isn’t currently drilling, they are re-signing leases–a vote of confidence that drilling will return soon…
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Steady Progress at Belmont County, OH Ethane Cracker Plant Site

OH-WV mapIt was exactly a year ago (last Friday) that PTT Global Chemical announced their intentions to build an ethane cracker plant in Belmont County, OH (see It’s Official: Belmont County Chosen as POSSIBLE Cracker Plant Site). Since that time a number of positive signs have occurred that indicate this is a real, very serious project. One such sign is that PTT is paying $100 million to have the engineering work done for the plant (see PTT Announces 2 Contractors Working on Belmont Cracker Plant). Another sign is that demolition work at the site has begun (see Ongoing Demolition Work at Future Belmont OH Ethane Cracker Site). The demolition work, as well as the design work, continues. Here’s an update on the latest good signs coming from the proposed Belmont cracker plant…
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Seneca Res. Keeps 1 Rig Drilling in PA; Details on Their Program

Seneca ResourcesThe Philadelphia Inquirer has published yet another “it’s really bad in the gas industry” articles–news they obviously delight in sharing. However, amid the bad news of fewer jobs and businesses falling on hard times, we spotted some good news in the article: Seneca Resources continues to operate a single drilling rig in Pennsylvania. It would be easy to idle the rig and layoff the people running it–but they’ve kept it going, to their credit. So we’d like to celebrate a little good news amid plenty of bad news. The excerpted article below highlights the story of the guy supervising that lone, still-operating Seneca rig. Along the way we get some interesting inside details about how long it takes Seneca to drill–and how much money it costs to drill a hole these days compared with just a year or two ago…
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PA Town May Change Charter as Tactic to Stop Injection Well

dodo bird
dodo bird

In 2013 the radical leftist PA-based group Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) convinced enough ignoramuses in Highland Township (Elk County, PA) to pass a so-called Community Bill of Rights. Seneca Resources, a driller with leases and an active drilling program in Elk, had planned to drill an injection well on their own property to dispose of their own flowback and produced water. The CELDF-inspired ordinance Highland Twp passed prevented it, and Seneca threatened to sue the town (see Seneca Resources Threatens to Sue PA Town over Injection Well). Seneca made good and filed to sue, but the town and CELDF tried to prevent the lawsuit. In late March of this year, a judge overruled the objections of the radical CELDF and the nutjobs from town board (see Judge Rules Seneca May Challenge Injection Well Ban in Elk County). The latest in this ongoing saga is that the obstinate dupes from Highland, still listening to the CELDF (which has lost every home rule case brought against it) now plans to set up a home-rule charter commission–essentially change the town’s incorporation status. It’s a tactic of the desperate to try and circumvent state law…
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Radical Fractivist Group Tries to Bully EPA Members into Silence

no bullyingRadical fractivism brooks no dissent. You either agree with them that fracking is evil and from the devil himself, or they WILL attack you–politically, professionally, personally–anyway they can. In other words, fractivists are bullies and not interested in free speech. If you have an opposing viewpoint or try to support your views with science and facts, you’re immediately shut down. That’s how it works with these vicious fossil fuel opponents. We’ve been tracking and telling you about an issue that first began in June 2015. The federal Environmental Protection Agency, after four years of study, concluded that fracking does not contaminate groundwater supplies (see EPA Draft Report Says Fracking Doesn’t Pollute Groundwater Supplies). Such a thing could not stand in the twisted minds of fractivists. They began demanding the EPA change the outcome of its scientific conclusions. Don’t like the science? Just change it! That’s the sentiment of fractivists. Bowing to pressure from the political left, the Obama EPA decided to have an internal board of 31 people–the EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB), perform a review of the study. You can guess where this is going. The fix was in with the SAB (see EPA Science Advisory Board Engaging in Fraud re Fracking Study). However, five brave, independent-thinking members of the SAB disagreed, and published their disagreement with the vote taken by the board (see 5 Members of Internal EPA Committee Think Fracking Study Correct). Those five members are now being bullied by Big Green groups, who are trying to silence them for expressing their opinion, an opinion different than theirs…
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PennFuture “Lauds” PA Vote to Accept Onerous New Drilling Regs

PennFuturePennFuture is a radical, anti-drilling group based in Pennsylvania. The group is the former employer of no less than two current, one former high-level deputies to PA Gov. Tom Wolf. Cindy Dunn was most recently PennFuture’s CEO. She is now the Secretary of the PA Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). John Quigley used to work for PennFuture. He’s now Secretary of the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP). John “legalize marijuana” Hanger was the Secretary of the PA Dept. of Planning and Policy for Wolf. Hanger recently left–the state–to join his wife and daughter in Massachusetts (see John “Severance Tax” Hanger Quits Tom Wolf Administration – Why?). Hanger was the former founder and first president of PennFuture. Last week we brought you the sad news that the PA Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) decided to approve onerous new drilling regulations, regs put forward by PennFuture Sec. of the DEP John Quigley (see PA Drillers Lose Vote to Stop Onerous New Regs in Partisan 3-2 Vote). Guess who issued a press release “lauding” the vote? Yep–the radicals at PennFuture. Which tells you all you need to know about just how bad these new regulations are…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Mon, Apr 25, 2016

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: Appalachian Basin poised to become petchem center; Ohio Valley natgas leads nation in growth; pipelines will boost WV economy; Schlumberger CEO sees ‘full-scale cash crisis’ in oil sector; Sixth Circuit weighs in on WOTUS; China’s rising natgas demand; and more!
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