PA DEP Arbitrarily Extends Comment Period for Atlantic Sunrise Pipe

Atlantic Sunrise econ impact
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Yesterday MDN pointed out that the battle to build the Williams Atlantic Sunrise pipeline is on–and your help in showing your support to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is very much needed (see It’s Time to Voice Your Support for the Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline). There is now a second front in which your help is needed–by showing support for the project with the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP). The DEP was supposed to have concluded public comments on water obstruction and encroachment permits related to the Atlantic Sunrise project on May 31st. But as they sometimes do, the DEP just arbitrarily decided to extend the comment period another 60 days–until August 1. No doubt because antis fussed about it. So it’s time to submit your comments of support to the PA DEP as well as FERC, to countermand what will surely be a tsunami of form letters coming from anti-fossil fuelers. Here’s how to make positive comments on Atlantic Sunrise to the PA DEP…
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NYSE Threatens Halcon Resources with De-Listing of Stock

Halcon ResourcesThe bad news just keeps coming for Halcon Resources, a driller that “guessed wrong” by leasing 140,000 Utica Shale acres in the northern part of the play (in Ohio) and currently doesn’t drill on any of its Utica acreage. Earlier this month we reported that Halcon has cut a deal to file for bankruptcy (see Another One Bites the Dust: Halcon Resources Filing for Bankruptcy). In January the company quit paying dividends on its preferred stock (see Halcon Resources Suspends Dividend Payments for Preferred Stock). Last December, in a bid to keep the price of the stock from slipping below $1 per share, Halcon did a 1-for-5 reverse stock split, combining 5 shares into a single share (see Halcon Resources Announces 1-for-5 Stock Split to Avoid De-Listing). Oops. That strategy didn’t work out so well. Halcon has just received notice from the New York Stock Exchange that unless the company can get the share price above $1 for 30 consecutive days, the stock will be de-listed from the NYSE…
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Coal Supporters Try to Stop Moundsville, WV NatGas Electric Plant

Moundsville PowerIt’s been a while since we’ve checked in on the proposed 549 megawatt, $615 million electrical generating plant to be built near Moundsville (Marshall County), WV. At last check almost a year ago, Moundsville Power was on schedule for an opening in 2018 (see Moundsville (WV) Electric Plant on Schedule for 2018 Opening). At that time project developer Andrew Dorn said he expected the project to break ground in early 2016. That didn’t happen. What’s the holdup? A group supporting coal-fired electric generation called Ohio Valley Jobs Alliance filed an objection to the West Virginia Air Quality Board’s permit issued for the project. Coal plants are dying almost daily, thanks to President Obama’s war on coal. People who support those dying plants are waging war on natural gas in a desperate attempt to stem the inevitable. Will the delay in construction mean the timeline for Moundsville Power slips?…
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Virginia Group Proposes Alternative Routes for Atlantic Coast Pipe

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Atlantic Coast Pipeline Alternative Route – click for larger version

There’s nothing more frustrating than engaging in a debate with people who fight dirty. The vast majority Big Green groups fight dirty when it comes to opposing natural gas drilling and infrastructure projects. They attempt use arguments about dirty air and dirty water and pollution to confuse the general population. But they can’t back up their words with any proof. The antis true motivation often stays hidden in the background–an irrational hatred of using fossil fuels of any kind. But they can’t help it–their true motivation often leaks out in their statements. There is no reasoning with an unreasonable person. So when we notice a group of antis that actually uses rational, well-thought-out arguments, it’s very much the exception to the rule–and worth noting. We have respect for those on the other side of the fossil fuel debate when they fight fair and challenge us using science and facts instead of innuendo and outright lies. Such is the case with a group opposing the existing route of Dominion’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project through Virginia. The group, called Friends of Wintergreen, submitted a detailed, 128-page analysis of four alternate routes for the ACP to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) using analysis from national environmental, legal and pipeline engineering firms. Friends of Wintergreen is not demanding that ACP not get built–they’re recommending other routes and supporting their recommendations with lots of analysis. Cool. We applaud them. Here’s what the group said in a recent press release, along with a copy of their 128-page analysis sent to FERC…
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Constitution Pipeline Doles Out Another $50K in Grants, Despite NY

money-bag.jpgSince announcing the project in 2012, the Constitution Pipeline has handed out more than $2 million in community grants to fire departments, police departments and a variety of nonprofit organizations that benefit the community. Recently New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo decided to block the Constitution Pipeline to placate his radical left supporters (see NY Gov. Cuomo Refuses to Grant Permits for Constitution Pipeline). Williams and its partners in the project have taken NY to court to overrule their blockage (see Williams Sues NY Over Constitution Pipe – DEC May Lose Authority). Even though Cuomo’s dastardly action has thrown the project’s future into some doubt, Williams and the Constitution are expressing no doubts. They’ve just handed out another $50,000 in grants (the eighth time they’ve done it) to worthy organizations along the pipeline’s proposed route. Here’s who got the money, and how much…
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SemGroup Buying Units of its MLP Subsidiary Rose Rock Midstream

Rose Rock Midstream logoWe often debate whether or not a bit of news is actually interesting for the MDN audience. Will this bit of news help either a landowner, driller, midstreamer, supply chain company or investor if they knew about it? The following story comes down right on the line for us. We could go either way, but we elected to include it. We don’t know when, exactly, but at least two years ago SemGroup Corporation, a publicly traded (shares of stock) midstream company that moves mostly oil from the wellhead to market, started up a master limited partnership (MLP) subsidiary called Rose Rock Midstream. An MLP issues “units” instead of shares of stock. MLPs have certain tax advantages for investors. We ran a story in June 2014 about Rose Rock buying some of Chesapeake Energy’s assets, including a trucking operation that services the Utica Shale in Ohio (see Chesapeake Dumps More Assets: Crude Truck Fleet & 200 Employees). SemGroup, the parent company, has just announced they are buying out the MLP units in Rose Rock and folding it into the stock-issuing parent company. From a practical standpoint, day to day operations at Rose Rock will not change. However, if you’re an investor in Rose Rock, your units will be forcibly purchased from you and you are about to enjoy a stiff tax bill…
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Siluria Gets Partner to Convert Methane Directly into Petrochems

Siluria TechnologiesA company we’re keeping our eye on is Siluria Technologies. We wrote about them a few weeks back (see New Tech Converts NatGas into Ethylene, Bypassing Cracker Plants). In a nutshell, Siluria doesn’t need to use ethane to crack it into ethylene (the raw material used in plastics). Instead, Siluria has invented a process to go directly from methane to ethylene, bypassing the need for a cracker plant to crack ethane. How cool is that? Siluria is building on their early success by partnering with Italian company Maire Tecnimont to “combine their respective technologies and expertise to bring to the marketplace a unique process to convert natural gas directly into commodity chemicals and their derivative products.” What does it mean? Does it mean Siluria has gotten an Italian partner to sell its technology in Europe? Does it mean Siluria will be able to convert methane into petrochemicals other than ethylene? No idea! But we’ll keep a sharp eye out for more details when/if they become available. In the meantime, here’s the Maire Tecnimont announcement…
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KM’s Elba Island LNG Export Plant Approved by FERC

Elba Express
Elba Express Interconnects – click for larger version

Great news! Kinder Morgan’s Elba Island, Georgia (near Savannah) proposed LNG export facility has gotten a green light from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). What does the Georgia Elba LNG plant have to do with Marcellus/Utica? Maybe nothing, but we suspect something. Kinder’s arch rival Williams owns the mighty Transco pipeline that connects, via the Elba Express pipeline, to the LNG facility. Currently Elba Island imports LNG. However, Williams has been on a mission to send Marcellus gas south–including to Georgia (see Marcellus Gas Heading to Georgia via Transco Pipeline). We don’t think it’s much of a stretch that Marcellus Shale gas, via the Transco, will be at least some of, if not the primary, source for gas exported from the Elba Island facility. FERC’s approval clears the way for construction to begin. The Savannah region will be the happy recipient of some $2 billion of investment to build the plant…
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Study: The High Cost of Capturing Every Last Molecule of Methane

liar.jpgA few weeks ago MDN brought you the news that the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued onerous new regulations on capturing every last molecule of methane all along the route from wellhead to burner tip (see EPA Does it Again: Tries to Destroy O&G with New Methane Rule). The EPA issued 600 pages of new regulations that requires the industry to install expensive new equipment to locate so-called fugitive methane that may or may not be leaking from wells, pipelines, etc. And if they find such microscopic amounts of methane, they need to capture it. All in the name of preventing non-existent man-made global warming. The EPA reassures the oil and gas industry it’s no big deal. Just install some new equipment, jump through a bunch of hoops, and in no time ‘t all you’ll be making money instead of spending it to comply with the new regs. That is a flat, outright, BS (Barbara Streisand) lie. We have proof. A new study from ICF International has run the numbers from some actual operations and finds the cost to comply with these onerous new regs is 5 times more than what the EPA has estimated. Let’s put it in very understandable terms. The ICF study finds in order to comply with the regs, it will cost $3.35 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf) for the volume of gas it will save. Producers are only able to sell their gas at an average of $3/Mcf. In other words, the industry will lose money to comply with the regulation, contrary to the line of bull the EPA has tried to feed us…
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S&P Global Platts Acquires RigData

RigDataRigData is one of the oil and gas industry’s most trusted sources for information on drilling activity in the U.S. RigData provides details on drilling rigs–where they are, who’s operating them, what kind of well they’re drilling. RigData publishes reports daily, weekly and monthly. We’ve seen their web and mobile phone app–seriously cool stuff. The company has been around for 25 years. So it was like a fracking-induced earthquake to discover that RigData has been sold–to S&P Global Platts. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Here’s the earth-shaking announcement…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Fri, Jun 3, 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: Insider’s guide to Range Resources; risks and opportunities with northeast pipelines; NY oil company shuns shale; Utica rig count shrinks to 9; Shell has already spent $500 million on PA cracker plant; another dullard town in CT bans frack waste; Mark Ruffalo’s phony water scams; oil stays above $50; and more!
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