Grant Twp, PA Files to Dismiss Lawsuit re Injection Well Ban

Unrepentant. That’s the best single word we can think of describing the attitude of “leaders” in Grant Township (Indiana County, PA) who illegally passed their own set of environmental laws, violating the PA state constitution, in a bid to prevent a safe saltwater injection well from being built in a rural location in the town. Grant continues to use radicalized lawyers in their lawbreaking bid to prevent the well.
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Range Signs Deal to be Main Ethane Supplier for PTT Ohio Cracker

Earlier this week we brought you a post exploring whether or not PTT Global Chemical will, in the end, actually build a $10 billion ethane cracker plant in Belmont County, Ohio (see Is PTT Going to Build a Cracker in Belmont County, OH…or Not?). Yesterday gave us one more strong signal for the “yes they will build it” column.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Sep 14-18

Last week Ohio finally broke the drought of not issuing permits for new shale wells in the Buckeye State. Finally! Last week Pennsylvania issued 13 new permits for wells on three well pads. Ohio issued 4 new permits for wells on two well pads. And West Virginia issued 1 new permit.
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Big Green Lawsuit Targets Cracker Plants, Incl. Shell PA Cracker

Shell cracker as of March 2020

Once again big money is being funneled to Big Green groups by secretive sources to finance a lawsuit attacking American infrastructure. The latest attack by Big Green, including a PA-based “environmental” group, seeks to overturn a recently-updated rule by the U.S. EPA governing air emissions from ethane cracker facilities.
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Potential Exxon Interest in Building M-U Cracker Plant Goes Cold

Last year MDN shared with you the rumor that Exxon Mobil was sniffing around Pennsylvania, investigating the prospect of building a multi-billion dollar ethane cracker like the Shell cracker being built near Pittsburgh. Those rumors went on for a while and even included evaluation of the Philadelphia area, not just Pittsburgh. Last week Exxon said unequivocally they have no active plans for such a facility in the Keystone State. Bummer.
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M-U Drillers Prominently Featured at DOE Virtual NatGas Summit

Richard Weber, CEO of PennEnergy

Yesterday the U.S. Dept. of Energy hosted a virtual 2020 Natural Gas Summit in Washington, D.C. DOE Secretary Dan Brouillette and Director of the White House National Economic Council Larry Kudlow were the two hosts and speaker/moderators. However, at least two prominent Marcellus/Utica driller CEOs participated, including Richard Weber from PennEnergy Resources and Jeff Ventura from Range Resources. Their message? We need more pipelines!
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Sources: EQT Offering $750M for Chevron’s Marcellus/Utica Assets

Last December Chevron announced it was writing down over $10 billion worth of its U.S. onshore shale assets, with $6.5 billion of that number coming from its Marcellus/Utica assets. Also in December, the company posted for sale ALL of their M-U assets (see Chevron Confirms M-U Assets for Sale, Asks Vendors to Avoid Media). In February Chevron hired investment bank Barclays to help shop their M-U assets with the bids due in August (see Bids for Chevron’s 550K M-U Acres & 500 Wells Due in Mid-August). “Sources” talking to Reuters have let it leak that EQT has offered $750 million for Chevron’s $6.5 billion worth of assets.
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It’s War: EQT Claims it Can Buy Hammerhead Pipe Due to MVP Delay

What started out as a spat between two companies that used to be one and the same, EQT and Equitrans, has quickly turned into open warfare that’s heading for court. We’re talking about the flap over whether or not EQT has the right to buy out Equitrans’ Hammerhead pipeline, and turn around and sell it, as EQT is now trying to do (see EQT & Equitrans Spat Over Hammerhead Pipeline Goes Public).
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Sep 7-11

For the third week in a row, both Pennsylvania and West Virginia issued permits to drill new shale wells last week, and Ohio did not. What’s up with Ohio? PA issued 13 new permits for wells on five well pads. WV issued 2 new permits on two different pads. PA’s new permits skewed toward the southwestern part of the state with 11 of the 13 permits issued (two in Bradford County in the northeast). The WV permits were both issued in Marshall County, located in the northern panhandle of the state.
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EQT & Equitrans Spat Over Hammerhead Pipeline Goes Public

There’s trouble brewing in EQT-land. Once upon a time, EQT was both a producer (drilling) and midstream (pipeline) company. But then so-called activist investors forced the company (after its merger with Rice Energy) to split in two–drilling and pipelines. The split happened in November 2018 (see It’s Here! EQT Midstream Division Now Split into Standalone Co.). The new pipeline company was eventually renamed Equitrans Midstream. The two companies, EQT and Equitrans, have maintained a close relationship with Equitrans doing the lion’s share of gathering EQT’s production and getting it to market. But now the two sides are squabbling over an Equitrans project called Hammerhead, and that disagreement has gone public with Equitrans issuing a pointed warning via press release.
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Encino Energy Joins ONE Future Low Methane Emissions Group

Encino Acquisition Partners (aka Encino Energy) bought all of Chesapeake Energy’s Ohio assets for $2 billion in 2018 (see Stop Press: Chesapeake Sells ALL of its Ohio Utica Assets for $2B). The deal included all of Chessy’s 933,000 Ohio acres (with 320,000 net Utica acres) and 920 operated and non-operated Ohio Utica wells. Since that time Encino has become one of the state’s top producers (see Encino Tops IP Charts with Ohio Utica Wells in 2019). Encino has just joined an organization called Our Nation’s Energy Future (ONE Future), a group dedicated to reducing methane emissions from their operations.
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Tioga County, PA Leased Landowners Lose Case to Block Gathering Pipe

Last Friday a federal judge in Pennsylvania rejected arguments from three Tioga County, PA landowners who claimed Marcellus driller Repsol did not have a right to install a gathering pipeline across their property. The landowners leased their property for oil and gas development and their property now flows gas, for which they’re paid royalties. Even so, the landowners claim Repsol does not have the right to build a pipeline because it flows gas from other properties not part of their unit. Like all lawsuits, this one is complicated, but instructive for landowners (and drillers) when it comes to pipelines and leases.
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EQT Shuts-In Production Again, Turned Off 1/2 Bcf/d as of Sept. 1

In mid-May the nation’s largest natural gas producer, EQT Corporation, temporarily shut-in (curtailed) roughly one-third of its natural gas production in Pennsylvania and Ohio (see EQT Shuts in 33% of NatGas Production in Pennsylvania, Ohio). The company curtailed 1.4 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas production and kept it offline until the end of June. Beginning in July EQT restored their curtailed production (see EQT Brings Curtailed Production Back Online, M-U Flows Back Up). As of Sept. 1, the company has turned off some of the valves once again.
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Pin Oak Buys Laurel Mountain Pipe System from Williams/Chevron

Pin Oak Midstream, a subsidiary of Pin Oak Energy Partners, a relatively young Marcellus/Utica driller based in Akron, OH, has purchased most of the pipeline assets of Laurel Mountain Midstream for an undisclosed amount. The assets include 1,050 miles of natural gas-gathering pipelines and five compressor stations located in three Pennsylvania counties.
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Sumitomo Corp Sells JV Stake in Butler County, PA Marcellus

Assets co-owned by Rex and Sumitomo in 2010 (click for larger version)

In 2010 gigantic Japanese trading house Sumitomo Corp. bought a 30% stake (joint venture) in Rex Energy’s Marcellus drilling operation in Bulter County, PA for $150.7 million. Sumitomo wrote down much of the value for that purchase in 2015. In 2018 Rex went bankrupt and now PennEnergy Resources owns and operates the Butler assets (see Rex Energy Sells Itself to PennEnergy Resources for $600M). PennEnergy is getting a new JV partner. Yesterday Sumitomo announced the sale of their 30% share of the action.
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