EIA: Marcellus/Utica Gas Production Will Drop 1/3rd Bcf/d in May

We’ve been dreading this month’s edition of normally our favorite report, the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Drilling Productivity Report (DPR). The DPR estimates how much oil and natural gas each of the country’s seven largest shale plays produced in the previous (current) month, and how much each will produce in the coming (next) month. The past few months have seen a big decline in Marcellus/Utica gas production, more than half a Bcf/d (see EIA Report: M-U Gas Production WAY Down March, April). According to the latest edition of the DRP issued yesterday, the downward trend will continue again in May.
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Diversified Deal to Pick Up Another 6,500 O&G Wells in WV, KY, TN

Diversified Gas & Oil (DGO) owns close to 8 million acres of leases with some 60,000 (mostly) conventional oil and gas wells. Their focus has been to acquire quality production and cash flow–regardless of the well or commodity type (gas or oil)–in the Appalachian Basin. They currently have over 400 Marcellus/Utica shale wells in their portfolio too. DGO announced it has a conditional deal to buy another 6,500 conventional wells spread across West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee, along with a 4,700-mile gathering pipeline system located in WV. The deal, “subject to ongoing due diligence,” is for $110 million.
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Chesapeake Beats Another OH Royalty Lawsuit in Federal Court

A few weeks back MDN told you Chesapeake Energy had beaten a lawsuit by a group of Ohio landowners who claimed Chessy had cheated them out of a collective $30 million in royalties (see Chesapeake Energy & Total Beat Class Action Royalty Lawsuit in OH). A second lawsuit by a different set of Ohio landowners in the same court was recently decided. This second lawsuit has gone in Chesapeake’s favor as well. The second lawsuit claimed Chesapeake had fraudulently concealed information on royalty statements dating back to 1993 (for conventional wells). The court found otherwise. Strike two for Ohio landowners.
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Chesapeake Energy Reverse Stock Split 1-for-200

The deed is done as of 5 pm today. Chesapeake Energy, with a stock price bumping around close to $0 (15 cents per share when we checked this morning), is doing a reverse stock split where the company will combine 200 shares of outstanding stock into a single share. The move is aimed at boosting the per-share price and preventing the company’s stock from being delisted from the New York Stock Exchange. Chesapeake recently hired “restructuring advisers” to help it navigate a looming debt default (see Chesapeake Energy Hires “Restructuring Advisers”).
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Virginia Passes New Law Aimed at Stopping Atlantic Coast Pipeline

A newly passed and signed-into-law bill in Virginia, House Bill (HB) 167, purportedly aims to “protect” electric consumers from shouldering the costs of new pipelines that would feed gas-fired power plants. What the bill actually does is remove freedom of choice for utility companies, driving up the cost of electricity in the Old Dominion. The bill does the opposite of what it says it will do. All in the name of trying to block Dominion Energy’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project. What a sorry state of affairs in a once-great state.
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Pitt Researchers Remove Radioactivity from Marcellus Wastewater

We spotted a new scientific study published in an upcoming edition of the journal Water Research. The study is called: “Sulfate precipitation in produced water from Marcellus Shale for the control of naturally occurring radioactive material.” Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh have found a way to strip out radioactivity from produced water coming from Marcellus wells so the water can be boiled to produce clean water and usable minerals/salts.
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Williams Pledges $1M in Grants for Coronavirus Community Recovery

Williams is one of the premier midstream (pipeline) companies in the United States. They own and operate more than 30,000 miles of pipelines, including the mighty Transco, the nation’s largest volume pipeline handling some 30% of all natural gas in the U.S., used every day for clean-power generation, heating and industrial use. Recognizing the economic carnage underway in many communities across the country due to the COVID-19 coronavirus, Williams has stepped up to offer $1 million in grants to nonprofit organizations–501(c)3s, K-12 public schools, and first responders. Details below on how to apply.
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Shale Energy Stories of Interest: Tue, Apr 14, 2020

MARCELLUS/UTICA REGION: PA Senate will return to session to consider bills to reopen PA businesses; Webinar: Think About Energy Briefing on Thursday April 16, 2020; OTHER U.S. REGIONS: ExxonMobil testing emerging methane detection systems across Texas, New Mexico; History tells proration would cause chaos in the Texas oil patch; NATIONAL: Another record year for low-cost U.S. natural gas – and why that’s good news; BTU analytics predicts natural gas production could plummet this summer; INTERNATIONAL: Trump says global oil cut will be about 20 million barrels; OPEC production deal, or price war 2.0?; What will oil autocrats do now to keep power?; Time to put China on lockdown for its dishonesty amid coronavirus crisis.
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