PA DEP Fines EQT $330K for Minor Erosion Violations in SWPA

The Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) has just fined EQT $330,775 for erosion and sedimentation violations at two well sites in Forward Township, Allegheny County, PA. Water with sediment in it leaked from the well sites in early 2018, which sometimes happens. The reason for the stiff fine is that EQT failed to notify the DEP when it happened. If the DEP finds out via its own inspections first, the cost goes way up.
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PA Senate Democrats Hold Anti-Shale Crapfest in Pittsburgh

Yesterday the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Policy Committee held a hearing in Pittsburgh, supposedly on strategies for combating mythical man-made global warming by reducing methane gas emissions. It reality it was an anti-shale crapfest, complete with speeches by radicals from PennFuture and the Environmental Defense Fund.
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EQT Looking for New HQ Building in Pittsburgh

EQT Plaza

EQT’s headquarters is located in a massive 250,000 square foot building known as EQT Plaza at 625 Liberty Ave. in Pittsburgh. Last week we told you that EQT is looking to sublease 46,000 sq. ft. of the building following layoffs (see EQT Downsizing Pittsburgh Office; Williams Keeping Big Office). This week we spotted the rumor that EQT is also looking for a new HQ building!
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EQT Downsizing Pittsburgh Office; Williams Keeping Big Office

It’s no secret that upstream companies (drillers) like EQT are trimming head count and reducing annual spending. So it probably won’t come as a surprise that EQT has put 46,000 square feet (out of 250,000 sq. ft.) in its palatial headquarters in downtown Pittsburgh up for sublease. Meanwhile, in a contrasting bit of news, midstream (pipeline) company Williams has just renewed the lease for its big regional Pittsburgh headquarters at Park Place Corporate Center–a 112,481 sq. ft. building.
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Driller for Wells at US Steel Plant Gets Earful from Residents

Last night people opposed to drilling a few wells at the U.S. Steel Edgar Thomson Plant in a Pittsburgh suburb turned up to complain that somehow a noisy, air-polluting steel plant will be made even nosier and more polluting by drilling a few shale wells on the property. It’s an absurd position to argue, but there you go.

NOTE: We’ve added a handy update from Merrion, outlining this project.
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PA DEP Hearing for Shale Well at U.S. Steel Plant Near Pittsburgh

Next Wednesday the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection will hold a public hearing on plans to drill a shale well(s) on the property of U.S. Steel Corporation’s Edgar Thomson Plant in a Pittsburgh suburb. What’s so unusual about the well(s) is that U.S. Steel itself will be “the sole consumer of the natural gas extracted.” That is, U.S. Steel will use the gas to power/feed the steel plant.
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Court Challenge to Plum Zoning Against Injection Well Proceeds

In early 2018, the federal EPA approved a new Marcellus wastewater injection well for the Pittsburgh suburb of Plum Borough (see Federal EPA Approves Permit for Plum, PA Wastewater Injection Well). The PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) also needs to approve it. They held a public hearing in October to elicit input, a hearing where every single person who spoke was against the project (see Plum Injection Well Hearing Draws Solid Opposition).
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MDN Featured in PublicSource Story re Shell’s PA Cracker

More than a month ago MDN editor Jim Willis was contacted by PublicSource, an independent non-profit news organization based in Pittsburgh. A reporter wanted to know if Jim would grant an interview as part of a story he was doing on the Shell cracker, pipelines and the petchem industry in southwest Pennsylvania. Jim said yes.
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PA AG Continues Marcellus Witch Hunt, Impanels Grand Jury

PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro

PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro, a sleazy politician, is investigating so-called environmental “crimes” committed by shale companies in a bid to boost his chances of being the next nominee to run for governor (see PA AG Investigates Shale Drillers for “Enviro Crimes”). One of Shapiro’s sham investigations is into Range Resources and the long-ago settled “Haney” court case.
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Franklin Park Tries to Block Fracking After Rejecting $1M+ Proposal

It appears the “leaders” of Franklin Park Borough in Allegheny County aren’t satisfied enough that they’ve rejected a free $1 million from PennEnergy Resources to drill under a town park (see Franklin Park Turns Down $1M+ to Drill Under Linbrook Park). Nope. Now they essentially want to ban fracking in the borough by passing an onerous new zoning ordinance.
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Big Crowd Turns Out to Support/Oppose Drilling Under SWPA Park

The mystery is now solved. Last week we incorrectly (based on a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review article) reported that FirstEnergy wants to drill a well under (not on) Linbrook Park, located in the Borough of Franklin Park in Allegheny County (see original story here). It’s not FirstEnergy but PennEnergy that wants to do the drilling.
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