Trump “America First” Energy Plan Posted on WH Website Day 1

Well that didn’t take long. Immediately, as soon as Donald J. Trump was sworn into office on Friday at noon, key changes were made to the official White House website. Among them: the page touting man-made global warming nonsense (i.e. “climate change”) came down, and up went Trump’s “America First Energy Plan” instead. Trump’s plan? Support shale, dump Obama’s so-called climate plan, and refocus the EPA. Slap me! Am I dreaming? Will I wake up and find Lord Obama is still in charge? Or worse yet, that Hillary is President? No! Trump won, and the best possible outcome is now happening for American energy (including shale energy) and the American people. A true “all of the above” strategy from Team Trump. Below is a copy of Trump’s energy plan and some of the hysterical reaction by radical environmentalists…
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US Steel Plant in PA Re-Opening – Manufacture Atlantic Coast Pipe?

A former U.S. Steel pipe manufacturing plant near Pittsburgh (in McKeesport) has been leased to Dura-Bond Industries and will re-open in the next 6-9 months, according to the president of Dura-Bond. The plant will hire around 100 people (fantastic news for Pittsburgh). According to the Pittsburgh Business Times, Dominion’s $5 billion, 594-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline–a natural gas pipeline that will stretch from West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina–will use Dura-Bond pipe. Our conclusion: One of the reasons (perhaps THE reason) for the McKeesport facility re-opening is to produce Atlantic Coast Pipeline pipes…
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Millennium Pipeline Sues Cuomo’s Corrupt DEC Over Expansion Delay

MDN has previously reported on a $900 million natural gas-fired electric generating plant coming to Orange County, NY (see Orange County, NY Marcellus-Fired Electric Plant OK’d by Judge). The CPV (Competitive Power Ventures) Valley Energy Center project is being opposed by local anti-drilling ninny nannies, including Hollywood star James Cromwell. No matter. It’s already under construction. Unfortunately the very worthy project is marred by corruption inside the Cuomo Administration (see NY NatGas-Fired Electric Plant an Inside Job for Corrupt Cuomo Aide). However, construction continues and the plant will get built. The problem now is getting a 7.8 mile pipeline, an off-shoot pipeline from the mighty Millennium Pipeline, built to the plant to supply the natural gas it will need to run. In November the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved the short pipeline (see FERC Approves Pipeline to Orange County, NY NatGas Power Plant). However, as with the Constitution Pipeline, the Cuomo Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is intentionally blocking this pipeline using delays–no doubt at Cuomo’s direction. Millennium is not, like Williams did with the Constitution, sitting on its hands waiting for the DEC. The Millennium is aggressively pushing the DEC to grant the necessary water crossing permits and has just sued the DEC to make it happen…
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Meeting Today re NJ Pipeline Slated to Run Through Scrub Pines

In January 2014, MDN brought you the story that due to incessant nagging from the NJ Sierra Club and the NJ League of [Liberal Democrat] Women Voters the Pinelands Commission, which oversees a stand of scrub pines in South Jersey, nixed a plan for a new natural gas pipeline to bring cheap, clean, abundant Marcellus Shale natural gas to South Jersey for use by residents and to feed an electric plant a local utility wants to convert from burning coal to natgas (see Sierra Club, LWV Chooses Coal over NatGas in South Jersey). In May 2014, NJ Gov. Chris Christie replaced two of the “no” voters on the Pinelands Commission, much to the consternation of the antis (see Marcellus Pipeline May Come to South Jersey After All). In August 2015, the staffers who actually do the work of the Commission decided to act, saying that they had the authority to approve the pipeline without a full Commission vote to do so. A panel of three New Jersey Appellate Division judges in November 2016 rejected that claim and said if you want to build a pipeline through the scrub pines, the full Commission must vote to do so (see Court Setback for NJ Pipeline Slated to Run Through Scrub Pines). The full Commission is now ready to act. Today the Commission is holding a hearing on the project and perhaps as soon as today the Commission will vote–in all likelihood to officially approve it…
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Debate & Misinformation re Frack Chemical Disclosure Rages in VA

Two weeks ago MDN told you about an effort in Virginia to ensure new changes in Virginia’s environmental regulations that require “mandatory disclosure of fracking chemicals, baseline water testing and monitoring, and spill prevention and response planning” would still protect trade secrets–the exact combinations of chemicals used by drillers when fracking (see Proposed VA Law Would Protect Frack Chemical Trade Secrets). As we said at the time, Big Green groups are demagoging the issue, claiming drillers want to keep fracking chemicals secret from first responders and doctors. Not true. But that doesn’t stop the headlines from continuing, like “Citizens have a right to know about fracking chemicals” and “King George supervisors lobby for disclosure of fracking chemicals.” Ah, sorry to burst the anti bubble, but fracking chemicals ARE required to be disclosed. The proposed law that modifies the regulations doesn’t change that. The new law only shields the exact combinations of chemicals from being disclosed–and even the exact combination can/will still be exposed for doctors and first responders…
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Handful of Butler Co. Residents Still Suing Rex Energy 5 Years Later

For years MDN has reported on a lingering/ongoing story of a community in western Pennsylvania (in Butler County) who say that nearby drilling by Rex Energy led to contamination of their well water supplies (see PA Residents Weary of Fight with Rex over Water Contamination and Rex Energy Water Contamination Case Shifts Focus to Water Pipeline). Several of the families sued Rex. The PA Dept. of Environmental Protection, after an extensive investigation, said that Rex’s drilling is not at fault in the situation. However, for most of the families, the issue progressed beyond blame–apparently water quality in the area was never the greatest to begin with. Rex had built a water line in the area to supply water for fracking and had expected to turn over control/ownership of that line in 2013. That water line can potentially be used to supply fresh water to the affected homes. The debate has been: Who will pay to hook up the homes and to maintain the pipes and infrastructure required? Since Rex, according to the DEP, is not to blame for the poor water quality in the area, the company understandably doesn’t want to pay big bucks to connect and maintain the line to residences in the area. As far as we can tell, the line is not hooked up. The families with bad water still have bad water and depend on donated water to this day for drinking and cooking…
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Schlumberger 4Q16 & Full Year 2016 Results – Swings to Net Loss

The largest oilfield services (OFS) company in the world, Schlumberger, issued their fourth quarter and full year 2016 report on Friday. Schlumberger has major operations in the Marcellus/Utica. They drill and frack for many companies in our neck of the woods. (Other large OFS companies active in the M/U include Halliburton and Baker Hughes.) Schlumberger CEO Paal Kibsgaard said since the price of oil and gas is moving higher, his company will also increase the prices they charge E&Ps (exploration and production companies) in 2017. OFS companies have been hammered over the past couple of years to lower their prices. Such “price concessions” are now coming to an end. We can understand why. Revenue for Schlumberger in 2016 fell by 22% over 2015, and the company swung from making $2 billion in profit in 2015 to losing $1.7 billion in 2016. Ouch. Here’s the update…
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Integrated LNG-to-Power – Applications for Marcellus/Utica?

Below is an article not directly mentioning or tied to the Marcellus/Utica, but we can’t help but wonder if there are not applications for our region. The article focuses on the marketing and “packaging” of LNG (liquefied natural gas) as the new and “hottest” thing to hit the power generation world. If an electric power generating plant (that uses natgas) doesn’t sit along the route of a natgas pipeline, it needs to get that natgas via other means. Many countries around the world–not just the U.S.–are making a change from burning coal to burning natural gas. So getting the gas to the plant is an issue. There is a long chain of vendors between where gas is produced and where it gets used at a powergen plant. The gas is extracted and then hits a pipeline. That pipeline must, at some point, flow to an LNG liquefaction plant that cools and condenses the gas. The LNG is then loaded on a ship (typically) and sailed to another country. At the other country the LNG is offloaded, delivered to the end user, and before it gets used, it must go through a regasification process. There’s a lot of moving parts and logistics involved in moving LNG from point A to point B. So what if a company, or coalition of companies, were to form an alliance and market a ‘one stop shopping’ solution for power plants and the governments in other countries that want to use LNG? That’s the premise, and that’s the promise of what is beginning to be offered. No new technology–just a new way to market it. Which has applications for our own region…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Mon, Jan 23, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Utica rig count goes up; Range Resources volunteers help clean up watershed; Murrysville changing gas ordinance; WVU studying emissions from NG trucks; GE & Baker Hughes merger slated for mid-year completion; power sector CO2 falls below transportation CO2 emissions; peak oil demand, deja vu; China’s LNG imports rocket up 33%; and more!
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