Oil Price War: Saudis Target Russia, Flood Market, Prices Collapse

Something truly historic happened yesterday. And there is a tie-in to the Marcellus/Utica (which we’ll get to, stick with us). At its core, what happened yesterday is pretty simple to grasp, although most media stories you read either miss it or bury it. Last Friday Russia told OPEC it would no longer participate in coordinating production cuts with Saudi Arabia and the other OPEC countries in an effort to boost the price of oil (see Russia’s Vladimir Putin Declares War on American Shale Oil). Russia’s goal is to bury American shale oil producers.
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Montage Resources 2019 in Review, What’s Ahead in 2020

Montage Resources provided an update on fourth-quarter and full-year 2019 performance and what to expect in 2020 last Friday. You may recall Montage is the name of the company that resulted after the merger of Eclipse Resources with Blue Ridge Mountain Resources one year ago (see Blue Ridge Merges with Eclipse, Renamed to Montage Resources). Montage previously announced it will mainly focus on drilling Marcellus wells in Ohio (not a typo!). Perhaps most notable about the company update from Friday is that for three years running (consolidated numbers) the company has turned a profit–the largest profit being in 2019, with $31.8 million. That’s remarkable given the economic pickle drillers are in right now.
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PA Dem Shouts Union Members are “Losers” at Rally for Petchem Bill

Dueling rallies at the Capitol in Harrisburg, PA yesterday provide the perfect picture of the difference between reasonable and unreasonable, between behavior that is adult and behavior that is juvenile, between pro-fossil fuel and anti-fossil fuel. It was also the perfect picture to describe why there is now an open civil war in the PA Democrat Party, and why trade union members are leaving the Dems in droves. The two rallies were there to support (or oppose) House Bill (HB) 1100, aimed at attracting new petrochemical investments to the state.
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National Energy Tech Lab Helps Shale Companies Frack Better

At first efforts by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) and its Marcellus Shale Energy and Environment Laboratory (launched five years ago) was aimed at tests to ensure fracking of shale wells (in all regions) does not harm the environment. It worked. NETL did prove that modern drilling and fracking is safe. Now the NETL mission has changed. New NETL tests launched across the country over the past year will help drillers understand how to frack even better than they do now! Yes, it can help drillers with their bottom line, but the purpose of NETL’s testing goes far beyond that.
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Making the Case PA Marcellus Production Needs to Shrink

Mudrock Energy is a consulting company based near Pittsburgh that provides specialized geoscience analysis and market research across the energy industry. Mudrock founder and CEO Dave Boyer, an AAPG Certified Petroleum Geologist, recently worked up an analysis of Pennsylvania’s shale production. He published his research on the Medium website and sent us a link with an encouragement to share it with the MDN audience. In his analysis, Boyer makes the case that PA’s continuing expansion of ever more production needs to stop. NOW.
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Aimless WV Antis Protest in Charleston Against Canadian Pipeline

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A group of radical anti-fossil fuel nutters who ostensibly oppose the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) that runs from West Virginia into southern Virginia are apparently without enough to do since MVP is now 90% built and close to being done. So instead of conducting a protest against MVP, members of the Appalachians Against Pipelines (AAP) protest group decided to stage an illegal protest at another pipeline builder with an office in Charleston, WV–TC Energy. TC (formerly TransCanada) has nothing to do with MVP. Idle hands are the devil’s workshop.
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NYC Mayor Demands End to Oil/Gas in Buildings by 2040

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is about as power-mad as former NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Notice how Dems love to run other people’s lives for them? The latest attempt at total control of every citizen’s life is to ban the use of fossil fuels in the city. de Blasio recently announced his administration wants to end the use of natural gas and fuel oil in buildings throughout the city by 2040. What’s not entirely clear is whether he will force existing buildings to retrofit to all-electric (or steam created by electric, etc.), or whether this applies only to new buildings and those receiving renovations. Any way you slice it, NYC is heading for a disaster of biblical proportions if this policy gets adopted.
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Shale Energy Stories of Interest: Tue, Mar 10, 2020

OTHER U.S. REGIONS: Tellurian makes managements appointments; Columbia gas pleads guilty over Mass. pipeline blasts; NATIONAL: Climate change lawsuits collapsing like dominoes; Energy valuations: Freefall into bankruptcy or is this time different?; There are no winners in oil market’s price war; Brace yourself for another 33% drop in the price of crude oil; White House can lend U.S. shale a helping M&A hand; INTERNATIONAL: The coronavirus is an economic pandemic, panicking markets and slowing growth.
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