BLM Auctions 75 Acres in OH’s Wayne Natl Forest for $209/Acre

Last week the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Eastern States Office ran another oil and gas lease auction for federal land on the eastern side of the country. Up for auction was 2,456 acres in Ohio, Michigan and Mississippi. Only half of the property listed for auction actually brought bids and sold. Of the 2,456 acres offered, a piddly 75 acres, in two parcels, was located in Ohio’s Wayne National Forest (WNF)–in Monroe County. That is, 3% of all the acreage in the BLM sale was in the Ohio Utica–and yet that 3% brought in 69% of the revenue from the sale: $15,720 total. However, the amount paid per acre for the WNF parcels seems to be small–just $209 per acre. So who picked up the 75 acres for a song?
Continue reading

Mass. Hates New NatGas Pipelines – Unless it’s for a Pot Farm

It seems all of New England hates natural gas pipelines of any kind–whether large interstate pipelines to bring low-cost, clean-burning Marcellus gas into the region, or tiny new extensions of existing local distribution pipelines (the local gas company), especially after the tragedy near Boston (see Local NatGas Pipes Explode Near Boston Killing 1, Injuring 25). But it seems there is at least one exception to the rule of “no new nasty fossil fuel pipelines” in Massachusetts. That exception is if a pipeline is needed to run a co-generation plant at a marijuana farm. Yeah baby! A new gas pipeline is A.O.K. as long as it’s being used to grow pot. Pass the joint this way, would ya?
Continue reading

SW PA Farmer Challenges Reg Preventing Shale Well on Her Land

Jefferson Hills, PA

Seven selfish Pennsylvania towns sued PA in 2012 over the zoning provisions in the then-new Act 13 law, eventually winning at the PA Supreme Court level (see PA Supreme Court Rules Against State/Drillers in Act 13 Case). The Act 13 victory gave townships and municipalities across the Commonwealth the right to pass local zoning ordinances that restrict, but don’t outright ban, Marcellus/Utica drilling. Towns with a majority of antis in charge got pretty creative and effectively banned drilling in many towns–like Jefferson Hills in Allegheny County. Now, a brave farmer, Carol Ann Bucar, is pushing back against overly restrictive zoning ordinances that prevent shale drilling on her 197-acre farm. Her property rights have been stripped away, and she’s seeking to overturn the zoning regulations that do it.
Continue reading

Duke Energy’s 13-Mile Cincinnati NatGas Pipeline Back on Track

It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything about Duke Energy’s plan to build a critically-needed natural gas pipeline near Cincinnati, OH, to replace an old pipeline built in the 1950s. We told you in April that Duke had, finally, refiled their application to build the new pipeline along an alternate route, with a few tweaks (see Duke Energy Refiles 13-Mile Cincinnati NatGas Pipeline Plan). Without this new 20-inch, 13-mile pipeline, some folks around Cincy will have to go without natural gas. Such arguments fall on deaf ears with anti-fossil fuelers. The new news is that Duke is moving forward with the project. A public hearing is now scheduled for next March, and an “evidentiary” hearing is scheduled for next April.
Continue reading

Utica Driller Gulfport Energy Appoints New CEO/President

In early November, Gulfport Energy, an independent oil and gas driller with significant acreage positions in the Utica Shale of eastern Ohio and the SCOOP Woodford and SCOOP Springer plays in Oklahoma, canned their CEO Michael Moore following allegations that he used a company credit card, and the company chartered jet, for personal uses (see Shakeup: Gulfport CEO Michael Moore Fired, Interim CEO Appointed). Gulfport appointed COO Donnie Moore (no relation to Michael) to be interim CEO while they figured out next steps. Those steps are now figured out. After a nationwide search, Gulfport has appointed David M. Wood to become the new president & CEO. Donnie Moore will revert to his role of COO, answering to Wood.
Continue reading

NYSE Threatens Weatherford with Delisting Stock

Weatherford stock performance last 6 mo. (click for larger version)

We haven’t written about Weatherford International, the world’s fourth largest oilfield services (OFS) company, since last February. In the past, we’ve posted a number of stories about Weatherford’s financial troubles–and seemingly inevitable march toward bankruptcy (see our stories here). So far, they’ve stayed solvent. We do, however, have another twist in the plot line to tell you about. The NYSE (New York Stock Exchange) has officially notified Weatherford that its stock price has fallen below $1 per share for 30 consecutive trading days, and that if the company can’t get the share price up, the stock will be delisted. Weatherford is telling investors to stay calm, they have a plan and they have six months to comply with the NYSE directive.
Continue reading

US & Canada Become LNG Export “Powerhouse” – List of Projects

LNG (liquefied natural gas) is increasingly a critical part of the natural gas picture here in the U.S.–and in the Marcellus/Utica–as in exports of LNG. This year Dominion Energy’s Cove Point LNG export terminal in Maryland came online, and early next year Kinder Morgan’s Elba Island LNG export facility along the coast of Georgia is due to go online. Not only that, we now see a trend of setting up smaller LNG facilities inland, not situated along the coast, in places like northeastern Pennsylvania (see Big News! Marcellus LNG Export Plant Coming to Landlocked NEPA). But LNG export facilities don’t have to be located along the East Coast. Some of our Marcellus/Utica molecules are getting exported from places like Cheniere’s Sabine Pass facility in Louisiana. We spotted an excellent article that summarizes which LNG export operations in both the U.S. and in Canada are likely to go online by 2020, and which are still years away from getting built.
Continue reading

Energy Stories of Interest: Wed, Dec 19, 2018

The “best of the rest”–stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading: PA joins 8 other states, D.C. to develop regional program to cap greenhouse gas pollution from transportation; Ohio shale production spikes, and what that means for the state; How responsive will Cove Point LNG exports be to economics?; NY Comptroller DiNapoli facing heat over climate change; Natural gas industry burns for more pipeline capacity in Mass.; Anti-pipeline activism isn’t generating more investment in renewable energy; The incredible shrinking credibility of the climate movement; Oil nosedives to $46 – worries about economy collide with supply glut; Natural gas producer key to Trump’s energy dominance agenda strikes new deal with Malaysia.
Continue reading