Rex Energy Selling Illinois Basin Assets, Focus 100% on Marcellus

Rex Enegy Moraine East
Rex Enegy Moraine East – click for larger version

Rex Energy has always been one of our favorite smaller drillers in the Marcellus/Utica region. Yes, we know you’re not supposed to love some of your drilling children more than others–but we do! We’ve often called Rex “the little energy company that could, and does.” Like most E&Ps (exploration and production companies), Rex has had a tough time coming through the recent crash in the price of gas and oil (see Rex Energy Converts IOUs into Common Stock, Avoids Bankruptcy?; Rex Energy 1Q16: Lost $62M, but Still Drilling in the Marc/Utica; and Rex Energy Swapping $631M in Private IOUs for Public IOUs). Rex has always concentrated on two regions: the Marcellus/Utica, and the Illinois Basin. No more. Rex is now a “pure play” driller after announcing it will sell all of its Illinois Basin assets–for $40 million to Campbell Development Group…
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Supporters Dominate 2nd FERC Hearing for Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline

Atlantic SunriseThe silent pipeline-supporting majority became more vocal last night at a second hearing in as many days for the Williams Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline. Monday night’s Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) public hearing was a circus-like freak show, complete with one crazy wearing a cape like he’s Superman (see Lancaster Antis Try to Bully Pipeline Supporters, FERC Reps). In contrast, last night’s FERC hearing at Lebanon Valley College in Annville was dominated by solid, clear-thinking residents who support the pipeline and the benefits it will bring to the community. Oh there were a few crazies present, but nothing like the night before…
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OH Conventional Oil Well Driller Fined for Dumping Brine in Ditch

jail cellWe have to confess this story completely escaped us–until now. But we think we know why. We spotted a story (below) in a Wheeling, WV newspaper about an Ohio driller who was caught–back in 2011–dumping about 50 gallons per week of brine from some of his oil wells into an open ditch in Monroe County, OH. The story implies the brine (i.e. wastewater) is from fracked wells. The story is wrong. The brine is from conventional oil wells, not fracked shale wells. The driller/operator of the wells is one Donald Hercher and he’s just been sentenced to four days in jail, two years of probation, and a $70,000 fine. Aside from setting the record straight, the reason the story interests us is because of several other aspects of Hercher’s punishment–he’s being forced to write and publish an article in three trade journals “to educate readers on the ‘Waterways of the U.S.'” and to donate $5,000 to a private organization…
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Elizabeth Twp Rejects Clean Invenergy Power Plant at Dump Site

Elizabeth Township PA
Elizabeth Township PA – Credit: Wikipedia

Invenergy is in the process of building a $500 million Marcellus gas-fired electric plant in Jessup (Lackawanna County), PA–near Scranton, PA in the northeastern part of the state (see PA DEP Approves Jessup, PA Marcellus Gas Electric Plant). When built, and every indication is that it will get built this year, the Jessup plant will be the largest gas-fired plant in the state, generating 1,480 megawatts of electricity by using clean-burning Marcellus Shale gas. With that successful project under way, Invenergy turned their attention to the southwestern part of PA and announced their desire/plan to build a second plant in Elizabeth Township, in Allegheny County (see Invenergy Eyes SWPA for Second Marcellus-Powered Electric Plant). The second plant would be much smaller, at 550 megawatts, and would be built on a brownfield site near Pittsburgh. Even though the site where Invenergy wants to build is a former landfill where fly ash was dumped, making it unusable for just about any other purpose, a group of local residents would prefer to keep it a contaminated dump rather than convert it to a beneficial use like generating electricity (see Invenergy Gets Pushback on Proposed Natgas Power Plant in SWPA). Such is the kooky world of antis. Unfortunately, the local kook antis have now enlisted the support of Elizabeth Township’s zoning board…
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Voice Support for CPV NatGas Power Plant in Cambria County, PA

Cambria County PA
Cambria County PA – Credit: Wikipedia

Anti fossil fuelers in Pennsylvania have gone so bizarrely off the rails they object to ANYTHING that uses, touches or mentions “natural gas.” They have, quite simply, left their senses. They are irrational. One of the latest examples is their total opposition to allowing new clean-burning natural gas-fired electric plants to be built. We told you in a companion story today that Elizabeth Township (near Pittsburgh) is refusing to site a natgas-fired electric plant on an old landfill site, suitable for no other purpose (see Elizabeth Twp Rejects Clean Invenergy Power Plant at Dump Site). The next battle will be at a hearing for a proposed plant in Cambria County. Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) is planning a $900 million natgas-fired power plant to be located off Route 271 near Vinco in Cambria County (see 2 Natgas-Fired Electric Power Plants Coming to Cambria County, PA). The PA Dept. of Environmental Protection will hold a hearing in Mineral Point next Tuesday on the proposed CPV project. It’s important for natural gas supporters to turn out and voice your support…
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DTE Energy Wants Ratepayers to Pay if NEXUS Pipe is Unprofitable

Map_NEXUS_Full
NEXUS Pipeline Project – click for larger version

DTE Energy is a Detroit-based energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric utility serving 2.2 million customers in Southeastern Michigan, and a natural gas utility serving 1.2 million customers in Michigan. DTE’s businesses include power and industrial projects, natural gas pipelines, gathering and storage, and energy marketing and trading. DTE has its fingers in a lot of energy pies. DTE is one of the main customers for the 255-mile, $2 billion NEXUS interstate pipeline that will run from Ohio through Michigan and eventually to the Dawn Hub in Ontario, Canada (see Spectra Energy Files Formal FERC Application for NEXUS Pipeline). DTE is also one of the backers/partners in NEXUS–providing money for the project. Spectra Energy will be the managing partner that actually builds and maintains NEXUS. DTE has asked Michigan regulators for a guarantee that it can pass along NEXUS costs to gas and electric ratepayers IF the utility’s gas supply costs from NEXUS prove to be unprofitable. That doesn’t sit well with many people, including Michigan’s Attorney General…
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Judge Approves Penn Virginia Bankruptcy Plan, $50M in New Stock

George Soros
George Soros

Although headquartered in Radnor, Pennsylvania (near Philadelphia), Penn Virginia Corporation is an oil and gas driller with only a small presence in the Marcellus Shale: 21,700 net acres with no drilled wells. They concentrate on oil drilling the Texas Eagle Ford Shale play. Penn Virginia is one of the Philly area’s oldest companies, started in 1882 by Philadelphia coal barons. It later transitioned into an oil company. MDN told you in March 2015 that Penn Virginia’s top stockholder, the vile corporate raider George Soros, forced the company to put itself up for sale so George can line his pockets with more cash (see George Soros Finally Bullies Penn Virginia into Selling Itself). That didn’t work out so well for old George. Penn Virginia filed for bankruptcy last month (see George Soros’ Penn Virginia Corp. Files for Bankruptcy). The judge overseeing the bankruptcy proceedings has just ruled that Penn Virginia is cleared to float $50 million of new stock. The question (for us) is: Who in their right mind would buy stock from a company going through bankruptcy? To further line the pockets of Soros? No thanks. The judge has also not ruled out the possibility the company can still sell itself. The new stock offering won’t interfere with a sale according to the judge…
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Radicals Try to Bully Stanford into Divesting Fossil Fuel Stocks

Stanford UniversityAnti-fossil fuel crazies have found a new cause: force investors to dump their investments in the oil and gas industry. The crazies hope by doing so that public companies like Exxon Mobil will crash and burn–and remove fossil fuels from the energy mix. It’s an LSD hallucination–but there you go. (Note: Many in the fossil fuel divestment movement are burned out hippies.) The crazies have tried this with a number of liberal colleges. The dolts who run Syracuse University fell for it (although they didn’t have much in the way of fossil fuel investments anyway), while New York University rejected calls to divest, calling such a strategy irresponsible (see Syracuse U Divests from Fossil Fuels, NYU Says “Irresponsible”). The crazies tried it with liberal bastion Cornell University–and Cornell said nyet (see Cornell University Rejects Fossil Fuel Divestment Scam). A recent study found that divesting from fossil fuels would cost investors billions of dollars (see New Study: Fossil Fuel Divestment Leads to Financial Fiasco). But still the crazies solider on. Their latest target? Stanford University. Some of Stanford’s well-endowed alumni are refusing to donate until the university divests. What will Stanford do? Cave to the crazies? Or hold firm? They have no one to blame but themselves. After all, Stanford “educated” them…
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India Wants to Form LNG Buying Cartel with Japan & South Korea

india japanIn 2013, Dominion announced a 20-year deal to export 100% of the output from their planned Cove Point, MD LNG plant. All of the Marcellus gas from Cove Point will get exported to both India and Japan (see Dominion’s Cove Point LNG Facility Achieves Important Milestones). At the time, natural gas in Japan was trading for $16.20 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf). Today it’s trading at around $7/Mcf. A lot has changed in the past three years. The world is now awash in LNG (liquefied natural gas), thanks to an abundance of shale gas. India imports almost all of its energy–and a lot of that energy is LNG. Instead of competing with other nearby Asian nations, like Japan, South Korea and even China, India wants to form a coalition, we’d call it a cartel, to band together to buy LNG. If such a block were to form, it would be a formidable force on the price of LNG in world markets. Such a cartel would influence the Marcellus/Utica region and the price we get for exported gas…
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Uncle Sam Says Hydraulic Fracturing Yields Environmental Benefits

frack-here-frack-now.pngAs a counter to onerous new regulations being pedaled by the out-of-control Obama Environmental Protection Agency, the American Petroleum Institute recently issued a statement pointing out the government itself–the Dept. of Energy and the EPA–have authored research reports that extol the virtues of hydraulic fracturing–i.e. “fracking.” The API’s statement says that the environment *benefits* from fracking, rather than suffering. After all, Uncle Sam says so in its own research…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Wed, Jun 15, 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: Marcellus production steady; Utica production up y/y; Hawaii’s move to LNG is slow; the Clinton/Sanders frack ban; this year’s election a referendum on energy; o&g reserves plunge 40 Tcf in a year; natgas predicted to hit $3.50/Mcf in 2017; PIPES Act sent to Obama; the rhyming cycles of oil and capital; and more!
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