Leidy South Compressors Generate $100M Economic Impact, 680 Jobs

Did you know that building just two new compressor stations in Pennsylvania will bring the state an extra $100 million in economic activity and support 680 direct, indirect and induced jobs? We sure didn’t! Last week Williams filed a newly published study with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on the economic impact of their proposed Leidy South Expansion Project (full study embedded below). The study makes an irrefutable case for building the new compressor stations in Luzerne and Schuylkill counties.
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HB 1100 Would Bring Cracker-Type Investment to Northeast PA

In April, Pennsylvania State Rep. Mike Turzai, Speaker of the House, and a group of conservative Republicans, announced a plan for the future of PA (see PA Republicans Launch “Energize PA” to Counter Wolf’s “Restore PA”). Called Energize PA, Turzai’s plan, as codified in eight bills he and others introduced, would “make it easier for companies to get environmental permits, encourage development on abandoned industrial sites, and make it cheaper to run natural gas lines to businesses.” One of the eight bills is House Bill (HB) 1100, a bill offering a tax incentive, a reduction in taxes, IF a company builds a new petrochemical plant in the state–particularly in the northeast “dry gas” area of the state.
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Cabot O&G Continues to Grow in NEPA, Opens New Facility

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Cabot Oil & Gas, one of our favorite Marcellus Shale drillers, focuses almost exclusively on drilling in Susquehanna County, PA, with a few wells in neighboring Wyoming County. Cabot continues to pour money into northeastern Pennsylvania. On Wednesday Cabot’s wholly-owned subsidiary, GasSearch Drilling Services, officially opened a new 28,000-square foot maintenance facility in Lenox Township (Susquehanna County) with a ceremonial ribbon cutting and open house for energy industry colleagues, neighbors and public officials.
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PA Landowners Receive $9.8 Billion in Royalty Payments 2010-2018

There is no way to track exactly how much royalty revenue is received by Pennsylvania landowners, because royalty income is not reported separately on the Pennsylvania income tax return. Royalty income is combined with rental, patent and copyright income on line 6 of the PA-40 state income tax return. However, the crack researchers at the Pennsylvania Independent Fiscal Office, a state government agency created in 2010, has a way of estimating how much revenue has been generated by oil and gas royalties. The IFO just released a report (full copy below) that shows they estimate royalties in 2018 hit their highest level since they began tracking oil & gas royalty revenue in 2010.
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Another Mass. Utility Slaps Moratorium on New NatGas Customers

A third regional natural gas utility company in Massachusetts has adopted a moratorium blocking new gas customers from connecting to their system. Wakefield Municipal Gas and Light Department (Middlesex County) has just issued a ban on the installation of natgas services to multi-family homes, apartment buildings and condominium buildings. No new pipelines to Massachusetts? No new gas customers. That’s the new reality spreading across the Bay State.
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Delayed Michigan Gas-Fired Plant Finally Begins Construction

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Nearly 20 years ago Indeck Energy floated a plan to build a an electric generating plant (powered by natural gas) in Niles, Michigan, not far from Chicago. In 2016 those plans got serious (see $1B Electric Plant Planned Near Chicago, M-U Connection?). In February 2018, Indeck said construction would begin in summer 2018–which never happened. Yesterday, Indeck finally held an official groundbreaking ceremony. The plant is now officially under construction.
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Country’s Biggest NatGas Power Plant Beginning Construction in OH

Artist rendering of Guernsey Power Plant (click for larger version)

Construction on what we believe to be the country’s largest natural gas-fired electric plant, the Guernsey Power Station (being built in Guernsey County, Ohio), is set to begin “immediately” according to the company hired to do the engineering, procurement and construction activities (EPC). Last week Caithness Energy, the project developer, announced it has closed on $1.6 billion worth of financing for the project and has given the green light to Gemma Power Systems to begin construction of the plant.
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WV Gov Justice Creates Downstream Jobs Task Force to Leverage Shale

WV Gov. Jim Justice

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice wants to ensure his state is in the poll position to grab as many new businesses and jobs as possible from the embryonic but rapidly developing petrochemical industry in the Marcellus/Utica region. Justice announced yesterday he has signed an Executive Order to form the Governor’s Downstream Jobs Task Force, a group of WV officials who will work on developing sites for use by petchem manufacturers and work to attract potential investors.
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As Risberg Pipe Nears Finish, $474M Plant Locates in Ashtabula

Credit: Erie Times-News (click for larger version)

The Risberg Line, a 60-mile pipeline from Crawford County, PA to Erie County, PA, and from there across the border into Ashtabula County, OH, began construction in February (see Construction Begins on “Massive” PA to OH Risberg Pipeline). As the project nears completion, Ashtabula is already seeing the benefits. A $474 million pig iron plant is being built in Ashtabula that will use gas from this pipeline to power it. The new plant will use 500 construction workers to build it, and 110 permanent workers to operate it. And this plant is only the beginning for Ashtabula.
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1st Casualty of OH Save Nukes Law – $1.1B Lordstown NatGas Plant

The boneheaded new law passed by the Ohio legislature known as House Bill (HB) 6, meant to save a couple of failing nuclear plants along with a few coal-fired electric plants, has just claimed its first casualty. And it’s major. Clean Energy Future Inc. which has already built two natural gas-fired power plants in Lordstown (Trumbull County, OH) announced it is canceling a project to build a third Lordstown power plant–costing the state $1.1 billion of investment. What a disaster.
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More NatGas Pipelines in Pennsylvania Benefit All State Residents

There is no disputing the fact that the Marcellus Shale has fundamentally changed the economic landscape for Pennsylvania–for the better. A former PA state senator and county commissioner from southeast PA recently went on a tour of shale related infrastructure in western PA and wrote an insightful editorial that outlines the case in favor of building *more* natural gas pipelines in the state.
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PA Playbook for Closed Coal Plant Sites: Replace w/NatGas, Petchem

Pennsylvania state officials in the Gov. Tom Wolf administration (yes, lib Dem Tom Wolf) are drawing up plans, a “playbook,” for how to redevelop the increasing number of coal-fired electric generating plants that are closing in the state. Most of those plans boil down to this: redevelop those sites as natural gas-fired electric plants and/or petrochemical plants. Both are tied directly to PA’s prolific Marcellus Shale. Who knew there was such common sense inside the Wolf Administration?
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Lack of NatGas Pipeline Hurting Economy in Holyoke, Mass.

Fossil fuel haters who refuse to allow a new natural gas pipeline in Massachusetts are causing real economic harm in cities like Holyoke. The mayor of Holyoke is one of those inflicting economic harm–on his own citizens!–by opposing a small 2.1-mile expansion of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline. A Holyoke City Council member is floating a resolution to support the pipeline, trying to change hearts and minds. Is he spitting in the wind?
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New Law Signed Expanding PA’s PIPE Program – More Rural NatGas

PA Rep. Jonathon Fritz

In mid-June, MDN editor Jim Willis experienced the rare treat of venturing out from behind the keyboard to a press conference held in the great outdoors in nearby Susquehanna County, PA. The topic? Energize PA, a series of bills being promoted by Republicans in both the PA Senate and House (see Spreading Marcellus Love Throughout PA with Expanded PIPE Program). The event was organized by PA Rep. Jonathan Fritz, who opened the presser with details on House Bill (HB) 1103, a bill he sponsored that would expand the state’s PIPE program to run more “last mile” natural gas pipelines to homes and businesses in rural communities.
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U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin Demands Details on China’s WV Deal

One of West Virginia’s two U.S. Senators, Joe Manchin, is not happy that the memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by China and his home state is hush hush. Manchin has not seen a copy of that agreement and he wants to see it, NOW. At a Senate hearing last week, Manchin made noise about the $83.7 billion deal signed by WV and China, part of a Trump Administration effort, back in 2017 (see China Agrees to Invest Amazing $83.7 BILLION in WV Shale, Petchem).
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WV Still Waiting for First Penny of Chinese $83.7B Investment

Two weeks ago at the Northeast Petrochemical Conference in Pittsburgh, a panel of speakers from West Virginia, including former Commerce Secretary Keith Burdette, addressed the topic of Advanced Manufacturing and Petrochemicals related to the shale industry. At the end of the prepared talks, the session was opened to questions from the audience. MDN asked the first question, which was this: “The $83.7 billion question is, what’s going on with the proposed investment in shale and petchem promised by China?”
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