Marcellus Leasing & Drilling in the West Virginia Panhandle Heats Up

West Virginia Marcellus Shale is getting hot. From an article* in the Steubenville (OH) Herald-Star, we get a mountain of good intelligence on what energy companies have and are paying in the West Virginia panhandle:

  • AB Resources is paying the New Vrindaban Hare Krishna Community in Marshall County $2,500 per acre for approximately 4,000 acres, and 18.75 percent production royalties. That works out to $10 million in lease payments.
  • Chesapeake paid $750 per acre and 14 percent royalties to the Wheeling Park Commission for leases in the Oglebay and Wheeling Parks in 2009. The park commissioner is not happy that Chesapeake is planning to pay more this year to lease public lands in neighboring Ohio County.
  • Chesapeake paid $2,800 per acre and 18.75 percent production royalties last month to the Marshall County Board of Education for rights to 177 acres in Sherrard.
  • Chesapeake has 11,000 acres under lease in Ohio County, and 45,000 acres (with 26 wells drilled) in Marshall County.
  • Trans Energy owns and operates 300 active wells in Marshall, Wetzel and Marion counties, with 40,000 acres under lease.

Also, according to the article:

Current lease contracts range from as low as $5 per acre to as high as $2,800 per acre, with production royalties ranging from 12.5 percent to 18.75 percent. Landowners are being urged to think carefully before signing any contract.*

*Steubenville Herald-Star (Mar 8th) – Steubenville Herald-Star – Natural gas could bring riches to Panhandle

Trans Energy Begins Drilling Third Horizontal Marcellus Well in Marshall County, WV

Trans Energy (Nov 18):
Press Release: Trans Energy Begins Drilling Third Horizontal Marcellus Well in Marshall County, WV

From the press release:

Trans Energy, Inc. announced today that it has begun drilling the Whipkey #1H well in Marshall County, West Virginia. The Whipkey #1H will be drilled and completed horizontally in the Marcellus shale.

The Company plans to drill the vertical portion of the Whipkey #1H well to a depth above the kick-off point of approximately 6,500 feet. A second, larger rig will follow-on immediately to drill the horizontal portion.

James K. Abcouwer, President and CEO of Trans Energy, said, “We have to-date successfully drilled four vertical Marcellus wells. We have also successfully drilled and completed one horizontal Marcellus well, the Hart #28H, and partially drilled a second horizontal Marcellus well, the Anderson #7H, both of which are in Wetzel County, West Virginia. Continuing our horizontal program in another county is another significant step forward for Trans Energy to properly develop its acreage position in northern West Virginia.”

The Company continues to expand its acreage position centered on Wetzel, Marion, and Marshall Counties in West Virginia, which it believes to be the heart of the most prolific natural gas resource in Appalachia, and one of the greatest in the United States.