EIA Dec ’17 Drilling Report: New Year to Begin in Record Territory

Yesterday our favorite government agency, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), issued our favorite monthly report, the Drilling Productivity Report (DPR). The DPR is the EIA’s best guess, based on expert data crunchers, as to how much each of the U.S.’s seven major shale plays will produce for both oil and natural gas in the coming month. EIA has adjusted their previous prediction for December’s natural gas production from 61.7 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) to 62.3 Bcf/d. Wow! Not only that, EIA predicts average production in January 2018 will hit 63 Bcf/d–yet another record high in a string of successive monthly record highs going back more than a year. The 800-pound gorilla is, of course, the Marcellus/Utica region. Our region will add another 347 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) of natural gas production from December to January. Yikes! Of the seven major shale play regions tracked in the DRP, Appalachia (the Marcellus/Utica) represents a full 42% of total U.S. production! Our region is a MONSTER natural gas producer. Here’s the latest DPR, along with some analysis from Reuters…
Continue reading

Converted Pipeline Near Philly Gets 2X More Interest than Capacity

In November MDN shared the exciting news that an old oil pipeline stretching from Northampton County, PA through Bucks, Montgomery, and Chester counties, terminating in Delaware County at Marcus Hook, had been purchased by a subsidiary of New Jersey Resources and will get converted to flow more Marcellus natural gas to the greater Philadelphia region (see Oil Pipeline Near Philly to be Converted to Flow Fracked NatGas). The project/pipeline is called the Adelphia Gateway. On Nov. 2nd, the project began an “open season”–a period of time when shippers can reserve capacity along the pipeline. Such contracts typically run for 10-20 years and guarantee the pipeline (which will invest millions) can recoup its investment and make a profit. The open season was scheduled to expire on Nov. 20th, but Adelphia extended the open season to Dec. 8th, owing to the Thanksgiving holiday and folks not being at their desks to make such decisions (see Converted Oil Pipeline Near Philly Extends Open Season for NatGas). Looks like extending the open season was the right call. New Jersey Resources says the open season was a huge success, with requests for double the amount of offered capacity along the pipeline…
Continue reading

PA DEP Goes Paperless, Jumps # of Well Inspections in 2017

It’s GO-TIME at the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP). GO-TIME stands for Governor’s Office of Transformation, Innovation, Management and Efficiency. In English, please! “Eliminate paper by using electronic devices.” Yesterday DEP Deputy Secretary for Oil and Gas Management Scott Perry said that by dumping paper and using apps on iPads, oil and gas inspectors save goodles of time by not filling out paperwork “back at the office” and instead stay in the field longer. All of which means that even with using less inspectors in 2017, the DEP actually increased the number of well site inspections by an extra 2,000 over 2016, saving the agency half a million dollars. It’s about time the DEP came into the 21st century. Now if we could only get them to speed up well permit approvals…
Continue reading

Lansing, MI to Build New 250 MW Gas-Fired Electric Plant

The Lansing, Michigan Board of Water & Light (BWL) announced yesterday it will build a brand new $500 million natural gas-fired power plant. The new plant will generate 250 megawatts of electricity, create 1,200 construction jobs, and go online in 2021. The plant will be located at the Erickson Power Station facility in Delta Township as part of its Lansing Energy Tomorrow plan, replacing (and retiring) BWL’s coal-fired Eckert plant at that location. Out with old, in with the new. Why report about a new gas-fired power plant in Michigan here on MDN? Because the mighty Rover Pipeline, which is due to be completed and online by the end of March 2018, terminates very close to Lansing (see the map below). While we’ve not spotted any stories indicating where the gas will come from to feed the new Lansing plant, we’d wager a lot of money that at least some–perhaps most/all–of the gas to feed the plant will come from the Utica/Marcellus, gas hitching a ride along the Rover Pipeline. The nuts from the Sierra Club are ecstatic that BWL will close the coal plant, but opposed to building a clean-burning natural gas plant. Some people are never happy…
Continue reading

Trumbull Residents Want Extra 60 Days to Fight 3 Injection Wells

Last Friday MDN told you about three proposed new injection wells planned for the Town of Brookfield, in Trumbull County, OH (see 3 More Injection Wells Coming to Trumbull County, OH). Highland Field Services recently brought two new injection wells online in Brookfield, and now wants to build three more wells in close proximity to the existing two. Highland recently published notices in area newspapers eliciting public comments–a step required under law. Public comments will be accepted until Dec. 25. However, some residents in the area (and likely a number of antis) are complaining that’s not enough time. They want the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources (ODNR) to extend the public comment period by an extra 60 days. They also want at least one public hearing (i.e. circus freak show) in order to get in front of cameras and microphones to make a scene. The update below seems to say the existing two Highland injection wells are still under construction. We believed (perhaps incorrectly) the two were already done and running. Comments by unnamed “opponents” appear to indicate they are still lobbying ODNR to prevent the two already-permitted Highland wells (now under construction) from actually going online–to say nothing of approving another three…
Continue reading

WV Rolls Out the Red Carpet – Welcomes China Trade Delegation

red carpet

Every time we write about the China deal to invest an amazing $83.7 billion (!) in West Virginia, we still shake our head in disbelief. Pinch us–it seems too good to be true! We suppose if half that amount, even a quarter of that amount, ends up getting invested, it’s still an unbelievable bonanza for the Mountain State. We first brought you the news in early November that the Trump Administration, in cooperation with the WV Gov. Jim Justice Administration, had brokered and signed a deal for China to invest $83.7 billion in WV’s shale and petrochemical industries (see China Agrees to Invest Amazing $83.7 BILLION in WV Shale, Petchem). Since that initial deal was signed (in China) delegations of Chinese representatives have been visiting WV, no doubt assessing just where and how much they will spend. Last week such a delegation visited WV on a four-day “relationship building” mission. West Virginians are hospitable people (that’s been our experience)–and they turned on the charm last week. You might say WV rolled out the Red Carpet for the Red Chinese…
Continue reading

Con Edison Looks for “Non-Pipes” Solution for More NatGas to NYC

Only in New York State do you find this kind of lunacy. Yesterday Consolidated Edison (Con Ed), one of the nation’s largest investor-owned energy companies, announced a request for proposals (RFP) looking for an alternative to building a new pipeline to get more natural gas into New York City–where the gas is desperately needed. Yes, pipelines are the safest mode of transportation in existence. Yet Con Ed wants something less-safe. Why? They don’t say, but no doubt to avoid dealing with the increasingly violent enviro left that opposes anything to do with fossil fuels–particularly pipelines. In Con Ed’s RFP they throw out some helpful hints at what enterprising businesses might consider proposing: “energy efficiency” (i.e. turn the thermostat down); “beneficial electrification of space or water heating” (i.e. use electricity instead of natural gas for water heaters and heating your apartment); “demand response programs” (i.e. use less by shifting the time when you use the gas); “provision of biogas” (use biogas–cow farts–instead of filthy fracked gas). Dead last on the list: “distributed natural gas storage, CNG, or LNG”–if you *must* propose using natural gas, figure out how to get it into the city without a new pipeline. Use less-safe tanker trucks, or figure out how to store gas from existing pipelines. Most of Con Ed’s proposed solutions aren’t about getting more gas into NYC, they’re about using less gas overall. Yeah, only in New York…
Continue reading

Cuomo Shafts NY State Yet Again; Bans Oil Barge Storage on Hudson

Freedom in New York State is all but gone–snuffed out by a corrupt dictator by the name of Andrew Cuomo. Warning to other states: Be careful who you elect in high office. Cuomo is not content to simply destroy the drilling industry in NY–he wants to destroy anything to do with fossil fuels. Crude oil from the Bakken in North Dakota has, for some time, arrived in New York’s capitol city of Albany via rail cars where the oil is loaded on barges at the Port of Albany for a quick trip down the Hudson River. Cuomo went after those rail shipments, trying to slow them down or stop them altogether (see NY’s “Progress” to Control Bakken Crude Trains Passing Through). Somehow those oil trains continue to roll into the Empire State, over the objections of Cuomo & company. The Port of New York/New Jersey, the American Waterways Operators, and the Hudson River Pilots’ Association floated a plan earlier this year to allow up to 43 barges filed with crude oil to temporarily anchor along a 70-mile stretch of the Hudson River, south of Albany, between Kingston and Yonkers NYC. The barges could add capacity and transport more oil down the river to NJ refineries than is currently possible. Yet enviro Nazis rose up and pressured the state legislature into passing a bill to (essentially) prohibit the oil barge plan. Cuomo gleefully signed the bill in October, cutting NY out of yet more commerce it could have had. All because of an irrational hatred of fossil fuels…
Continue reading

Anarchists Threaten VA Water Board Member at Her Home re Pipe Vote

Last week MDN brought you the news about a vote from the Virginia State Water Control Board that gave Dominion’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline a non-approval approval (see Atlantic Coast Pipeline Delayed in Virginia by Water Board Vote). The Water Control Board voted to delay granting a full approval until certain studies are completed next year–thereby slowing down the entire project. It was a disappointment to be sure. As disappointed as those of us who support fossil fuels and projects like Atlantic Coast are, we don’t tip over into threats of violence. However, the other side does. Just prior to the vote, someone or someones from the anti-pipeline anarchy movement (we’re not exaggerating, they call themselves anarchists–meaning those who don’t obey laws), draped a big, handwritten banner on the front porch of the vice chair of the State Water Control Board which said, “Stop Poisoning Our Community!” It was a threat. It was meant to bully her and make her feel unsafe and threatened in her own home. This is how some (an increasing number) on the other side behave. With threats and intimidation. And if that doesn’t work, with outright violence…
Continue reading

Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Tue, Dec 19, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: Korean SK Holdings gets $10M dividend from Marcellus/Utica investment; plans for new CNG station near Scranton; public hearing tonight on natgas pipeline under the Potomac River; Tellurian plans pair of pipelines in southwest to feed LNG plant; pipeline to Mexico on track; anarchists brag about sabotaging railroad tracks in Pacific Northwest to stop fracking; energy sector biggest winner in tax overhaul; climate change activists used arbitrary adjustments to exaggerate sea level rise; and more!
Continue reading