PA Gov Wolf Kills Plan for PES Refinery Expansion in Philadelphia

canceledPhiladelphia Energy Solutions (PES) has been on a mission to expand their operation at the Southport Marine site in Philadelphia by leasing an additional 200 acres to build a terminal for shale oil imports and exports. Believe it or not, a plan to lease the extra space has been going on for more than two years (see Marcellus Caught in Crossfire of Philly Port Leasing Controversy). That’s how long it takes to grease all of the corrupt Democrat hands in Philly to get anything done. Those corrupt hands have now been greased–by none other than Gov. Tom Wolf–and PES is now out in the cold, with their plan canceled by a $300 million bribe, er a, “investment” by Gov. Wolf and the good citizens of PA. Wolf’s plan is to turn that 200 acres into a big parking lot to park incoming cars arriving by container ships from Japan. Uh, Mr. Wolf, what happens when those cars start to be manufactured right here at home under President Trump? Oops, nobody thought to ask that question…
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US Exports More NatGas than Imports in Nov; First Time in 60 Yrs!

first time everThe import/export picture for natural gas into and out of the U.S. has, in recent decades, been mostly imports and not exports. With the rapid scale-up in shale drilling, the supply picture here at home radically changed. For years we’ve exported natgas to Canada and Mexico, but we’ve also imported a lot of gas from Canada (via pipeline). In the end, we’ve always imported natgas on balance–both by pipeline and by LNG carrier ships. But that all changed with the construction and operation of Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass LNG export facility in southern Louisiana. Platts is reporting that for the first time in 60 years the U.S. will export more natural gas than it imports during the month of November. It happened for a few days in September, but in November the balance of trade has finally tipped and we are once again a net exporter of natural gas. How cool is that?! A big part of the reason why is the Marcellus/Utica…
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How to Land a Job in the Marcellus/Utica: Education & Training

jobs.jpgLooking to land a job in the Marcellus/Utica industry? One of the best ways to do it is to go back to school. If you’re lucky enough to get into Pennsylvania College of Technology (an affiliate of Penn State), and if you graduate from one of their programs with a degree, you stand a 96% chance of landing a job. Other programs include ShaleNET, a service that helps train you and then helps find you a job in the industry. Not every job requires a two or four year degree. Often a certificate will suffice. Here’s more info on going back to “school” and what kind of education you need to land a job in the shale industry…
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Small Biz Looks to Plug in to Shell Ethane Cracker in SWPA

supply chainSome of the first businesses that will profit from the mighty Shell ethane cracker being built in Beaver County, PA will be small, local businesses. Restaurants, banquet halls, hotels, drug stores, real estate…the list goes on. But even small businesses that want a piece of the Shell cracker plant action don’t automatically have smooth sailing. Trying to get Shell to promote a business to its workers is hard work. Businesses report talking to Shell and being told that the company won’t help them by promoting them to cracker plant workers (a bit un-neighborly if you ask us). But that’s the life of an entrepreneur. You encounter brick wall after brick wall and you find a way to go through it, or over it, or around it, or under it. That’s what several small businesses in Beaver County are doing with Shell…
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PA Marcellus Jobs Saw Big Cuts from 2015 to 2016

cutting jobsThe Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry recently released employment numbers for the first quarter of 2016 for the Keystone State. Those numbers show that employment in PA’s oil and gas industry, which includes the Marcellus, dropped some 10,000 jobs from 1Q15 to 1Q16. That’s about one-third of the o&g workforce. Ouch. Still, PA employs twice as many people in o&g right now than they did when the Marcellus boom got underway in 2008. Here’s the lowdown on the latest PA employment numbers…
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Tioga County, PA: Marcellus Boom Followed by Not-So-Boom

tioga-county-pa
Tioga County, PA

The oil and gas industry has always gone through cycles–times when the industry expands like crazy, and times when it contracts. The cyclical nature of oil & gas is often characterized by fossil fuel detractors as “boom and bust.” We’ve heard the boom and bust argument for years, previously tackling the issue all the way back in 2012 (see Anti-Drilling Objection: Shale Drilling Causes Boom & Bust). We think it’s time to rename this phenomenon to something more reflective of what it really is: boom and not-so-boom. Many industries, indeed we would argue ALL industries, go through such cycles. The example we gave back in 2012 was to recount the history of the Binghamton, NY area, with our loss of IBM (founded in Endicott), and the loss of Endicott-Johnson Shoes (founded in Johnson City)–two huge employers in the region that eventually left. At least with shale the work returns after a time. IBM and EJ are long gone and never coming back. We’ll take the “boom and bust” of the shale industry over faithless manufacturers any day of the week! Here’s a close-up look at the boom, followed by the not-so-boom, in Tioga County, PA shale country…
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Fluor & Clean Energy Partner to Build 2 OH NatGas Electric Plants

fluorIn June, Massachusetts-based Clean Energy Future broke ground on their $800 million, 940-megawatt Utica gas-fired electric plant in Lordstown (Trumbull County), OH (see Lordstown Energy Center Breaks Ground on $890M Electric Plant). Construction is going well and the plant will go online in 2018. Back in February of this year, MDN reported that the owner of the Lordstown Energy Center project, Clean Energy Future, was considering building a second plant at the same site (see Lordstown, OH May Get Second Utica Gas-Powered Electric Plant). Looks like the rumors were right! Last week Fluor Corporation, a global engineering, procurement, fabrication, construction and maintenance company that designs, builds and maintains big facilities like electric power plants, announced a deal with Clean Energy Future to build a new natgas-fired electric plant in Lordstown, as well as a second plant in Oregon (Lucas County), OH. The new Lordstown project is being called the Trumbull Energy Center and is due to be built and online in 2020. This is terrific news for the Utica/Marcellus industry. The Trumbull project will be another 940-megawatt plant, same as the Lordstown project under construction now, and the Oregon project will be a 955-megawatt project. Together these two new plants have the potential to use something like 185 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of natural gas per year–a staggering number…
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FERC Quizzes Atlantic Coast Pipe About “Tribal Communications”

war-drumsAre those war drums we hear beating? Perhaps! If you are involved in the oil and gas industry in just about any capacity, it’s hard to miss the story of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and the paid criminal protesters who are trying to stop it (see Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters Turn Violent; Coming Here Next?). Supposedly the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe is opposed to DAPL because it will cross ancient burial grounds. While we don’t know if that’s true or not, we do know one fact not reported in mainstream media: the pipeline does not cross one inch of tribal lands. The project is almost done being built, with a small section remaining. Tensions are escalating as Big Green groups are paying “protesters” to trespass on private and public land in an effort to stop construction. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, in charge of authorizing the project as it crosses public land in the area, has badly bungled their role (see Army Corps of Engineers Turns Political in Dakota Access Fight). The lessons of DAPL and the Army Corps’ bungling are not lost on other government agencies, like the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Dominion’s $5 billion, 594-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP)–a natural gas pipeline that will stretch from West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina–is now coming under scrutiny by FERC for any impacts it may have on Indian (whoops, “Native American”) land it may cross. FERC has put out a call for a copy of all “tribal communications” the ACP project has had, no doubt in an effort to avoid another DAPL situation here…
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Marcellus/Utica Gas to Help Power Holland, MI Electric Plant

holland-miIt’s a smallish project in Michigan, but it’s important for the Marcellus/Utica nonetheless. Construction is almost complete on a $240 million, 145-megawatt natural gas-fired electric plant in Holland, MI. The plant will go online in February 2017. At least some of the natural gas that will supply the plant will come from the Marcellus/Utica, according to an official. When the plant goes online, it will provide around two-thirds of the electricity used in Holland. From one small power plant. Don’t you just love clean-burning, home-grown energy?…
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Michigan Chemistry Council Fully Supports Rover Pipeline

ET Rover Pipeline map
Click for larger version

So often we only hear about those who oppose safe pipelines (because it flows “fossil fuels”)–and not from those who support pipelines. There is one industry that knows the importance of new pipelines. Indeed, their livelihood depends on those pipelines. That industry? Chemicals. Natural gas in its various hydrocarbon forms (methane, ethane, butane, propane, pentane, isobutane) is used to make just about everything you touch throughout the day. From shoes to clothes to packaging to tires to shingles to carpets to paint…without fossil fuels there would be no modern-day life. We would be living in the Stone Ages, dying early deaths and never traveling more than a few miles from where we live. Those in the chemical manufacturing industry understand and support the vital role of pipelines in delivering the raw material they use to create our modern way of life. The Michigan Chemistry Council recently contributed the following editorial in support the Rover pipeline project–a $3.7 billion, 711-mile Marcellus/Utica natural gas pipeline that will run from PA, WV and eastern OH through OH into Michigan and eventually into Canada…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Mon, Nov 28, 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: Upstate NY towns oppose mammoth wind turbines (for good reason); big TX oil find won’t hurt OH Utica shale; Bowling Green, OH to vote on NEXUS offer; OH drilling picking up–slowly; JKLM ramps up drilling in Potter County, PA; FERC denies Sierra Club rehearing request; Dakota Access Pipeline “protester” gets serious injured; Trump to roll back some onerous o&g regulations; fracking blazed the trail for renewables; China getting second LNG shipment from US; and more!
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