Top 10 Shale Drillers in PA for 2020, by Number of Wells Drilled

The data crunchers at the Pittsburgh Business Times have been sifting through the data for 2020 and have composed a list of the “Largest Pennsylvania Shale Gas Drillers in 2020.” The PBT list ranks drillers by the number of wells drilled in PA for all time, including right up through the end of 2020. We resorted their list to reveal the number of wells “added” (drilled) in PA for 2020, to generate the following list of the top 10 drillers from 2020:
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FERC Gives OK for NFG’s FM100 Pipeline to Begin PA Construction

Some good news to share on this Friday. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has given National Fuel Gas Company (NFG) the green light to begin construction on its FM100 pipeline project. The FM100 Project will beef up and extend an existing pipeline network in northwestern Pennsylvania to flow an extra 330 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) of Marcellus gas to Williams’ mighty Transco Pipeline (see NFG FM100 Pipe Project in NW PA to Feed Marcellus Gas to Transco).
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Feb 15-19

All three M-U states received permits to drill new shale wells last week. Pennsylvania received 10 new permits. Ohio received 6 new permits. And West Virginia received 3 new permits.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Feb 1-5

Two of three M-U states received permits to drill new shale wells last week. Pennsylvania received 22 new permits (second week in a row with 22 new permits). Ohio received zero new permits. And West Virginia received 6 new permits (down from 8 new permits the previous week).
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Seneca Adding Another Rig in Tioga County, PA Thx to Pipe Expansion

Last Friday National Fuel Gas Company (NFG), the parent company for Seneca Resources and Empire Pipeline, issued its latest quarterly update for the quarter ending Dec. 31 (NFG’s first quarter 2021, everyone else’s fourth quarter 2020). Among the pearls of good news for NFG is that the company is adding a rig back in Tioga County, PA to drill on acreage NFG purchased from Shell.
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Seneca Resources President John McGinnis Retiring in May

John P. McGinnis, President of Seneca Resources

Seneca Resources is a major driller/producer in the Pennsylvania Marcellus and Utica Shale. Seneca is the drilling arm of a much larger company, National Fuel Gas Company (NFG). Seneca President John McGinnis is retiring effective May 1 of this year. Seneca senior VP Justin Loweth will replace him. We like to see promotions from within.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Jan 11-15

Two of three M-U drilling states received permits last week. Pennsylvania scored 14 permits to drill new shale wells. Ohio received no new permits for Utica wells. West Virginia received 5 new permits to drill new shale wells.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Jan 4-8

Two of three M-U drilling states received permits last week. Pennsylvania scored 10 permits to drill new shale wells. Ohio received 2 permits for Utica wells. West Virginia received no new permits to drill new shale wells.

NOTE: This post was updated on 1/14/21. We previously reported a set of 6 wells in WV in error–those wells received permits in 2020 and not 2021. Sorry! Thank you to a sharp MDN reader who flagged it for us.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Dec 21-Jan 1

We’re catching up the permits issued over the past two weeks (prior to this week). Pennsylvania issued 11 permits during that time, and West Virginia issued 3 permits. Ohio issued no new shale drilling permits over the past two weeks.
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PA DEP Issues Fed. 401 Water Crossing Permit to NFG’s FM100 Pipe

In March 2019 MDN told you about National Fuel Gas Company’s (NFG) FM100 Project in northwestern Pennsylvania that will beef up and extend an existing pipeline network to flow an extra 330 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) of Marcellus gas to Williams’ mighty Transco Pipeline (see NFG FM100 Pipe Project in NW PA to Feed Marcellus Gas to Transco). The Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently issued a federal Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the project.
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Seneca Resources Sells 92K Acres of Timberland in PA/NY

Some of the acreage purchased from Seneca (Photo: Courtesy of LandVest)

The Lyme Timber Company has closed on a deal to buy approximately 92,000 acres of forestland in North Central Pennsylvania and Southwest New York from Marcellus/Utica driller Seneca Resources for $116 million. Wait, why did Seneca own all of that acreage to begin with?
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3Q Financial Health of Top Marcellus/Utica Drillers Troubling

Capital expense (capex) investments made by drillers in the Marcellus/Utica during the third quarter of 2020 were the lowest in at least six years according to a new report (full copy below) from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA). The report looks at nine of the top drillers in the M-U and finds collectively they cut capex investment by more than one-third in 3Q20 over 3Q19. And yet those same nine collectively spent a half-billion dollars more during 3Q on drilling and building projects than they earned in revenue from selling oil and gas. That’s troubling.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Nov. 16-20

Last week Pennsylvania issued 11 new shale well drilling permits, all but one of them in the northeastern (dry gas) part of the state. Ohio issued one new permit, and West Virginia issued 2 new shale well permits.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Nov. 9-13

An interesting week for permits. Last week Pennsylvania issued just 2 new shale well drilling permits after having issued 3 the week before (lowest numbers we’ve seen). Ohio, which has not issued many permits in recent months, was on fire last week with 17 new shale permits! West Virginia issued just 1 new shale well permit.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Sep 28 – Oct 2

Somebody lit a fire under drillers in Pennsylvania last week! Or maybe we should say a fire was lit under the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP). PA issued 35 new permits last week spread pretty much across the entire state–in the northeast, central, and southwest portions of the state. Ohio, once again, issued no new Utica permits last week. West Virginia issued a single new permit last week.
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NFG: More PA Fracked Gas to NY Coming Online Next Few Months

NFG’s Empire North project (click for larger version)

Late last week National Fuel Gas Company (NFG), the parent company of Marcellus/Utica driller Seneca Resources and midstream company Empire Pipeline, issued its third-quarter (everyone else’s second quarter) financial and operational update. Among the things we learned: Seneca dropped to using a single drilling rig in June and shut-in some of its Marcellus/Utica production. That strategy remains in place for the foreseeable future, according to NFG’s top brass.
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