WV Surface Owners Accuse EQT of Selling Wells Should be Plugged

The West Virginia Surface Owners’ Rights Organization (WVSORO) is making some big accusations against EQT (perhaps other drillers too) in saying that EQT, which once owned thousands of conventional oil and gas wells in the state, is selling those wells to companies that may go out of business and therefore will not be able to properly plug those wells as they reach end-of-life and no longer produce. Specifically, WVSORO mentions the recent sale by EQT of its WV conventional assets to Diversified Gas & Oil. In June, MDN brought you the exclusive news that Diversified had purchased EQT’s Huron Shale assets in Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia for $575 million (see Diversified Gas & Oil Adds to Conventional Assets in KY, VA, WV). In October they did it again, announcing a deal to buy out Core Appalachia for $183 million, which includes ~5,000 producing wells (90% of production is natgas) and 1.3 million acres in West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia (see Diversified Gas & Oil Buys Core Appalachia for $183M). WVSORO’s charge is that Diversified is buying those wells intending to never plug them when they’re exhausted. WVSORO is asking the state to deny transferring those wells from EQT to Diversified.

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