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Ohio Utica Shale

Four Ohio Utica shale short news items

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

Ohio news from the Marcellus Drilling News:

1. Halcon Resources has started work on drilling the first horizontal well in Trumbull County.

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McClendon investigation likely to wrap up by mid-January

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the probe into the financial dealings of Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon, which started in April 2012 and was supposed to be wrapped up in “weeks not months” has still not concluded, but will do so by mid-January.

When it does, don’t expect McClendon to step down as CEO, says the Marcellus Drilling News.

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PRWatch looks at Energy in Depth

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

The Center for Media and Democracy's PRWatch offers its look at the pro-drilling group, Energy in Depth.

Click  here  to read its assessment.

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Fracking sand storage facility coming to Columbiana County

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By Burton Speakman

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Drillers working to increase collaboration with communities

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

From the Associated Press:

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Oil still king but coal, natural gas use growing

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

From the WorldWatch Institute:

 

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Exporting natural gas is the best way to go, writer says

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

A column by Robert Samuelson that appeared in late December in the Washington Post. It was distributed by the Center for Liquified Natural Gas.

Washington, D.C.: Let’s not smother the shale-gas boom. It is the crown jewel of the disappointing economic recovery. Why tamper with success? Yet, there are those who argue that benefits of shale gas could be maximized if we restricted gas exports, mainly as liquefied natural gas (LNG). This would, it’s argued, keep prices low for U.S. consumers and manufacturers, contributing powerfully to the revival of American industry. Sounds convincing. It isn’t.

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Jackson's successor will deal with federal fracking rules

By Bob Downing Published: December 31, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

11:33 a.m. EST, December 30, 2012

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EDF offers its views on 'Promised Land' film

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

'Promised Land' is not a movie about fracking, says blogger Mark Brownstein of the Environmental Defense Fund.

It is, he says, a movie about what happens before hydraulic fracturing or fracking when landmen come to rural communities to lease lands for drilling.

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NPR reviewer looks at folksy 'Promised Land'

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

Reviewer Jeanette Catsoulis of NPR got to view the new Gus Van Sant film, Promised Land, a look at land acquisition tied to natural gas drilling.

The film stars Matt Damon and John Krasinski and is set in western Pennsylvania.

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New anti-fracking books are popping up

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News, a pro-drilling source:

The anti-drillers are having a heyday—when it comes to writing new books. First was The End of Country: Dispatches from the Frack Zone by Seamus McGraw, garnering high praise from Bobby Kennedy, Jr. and Tom Brokaw. Then came Under the Surface: Fracking, Fortunes, and the Fate of the Marcellus Shale by former Gannett reporter Tom Wilbur.

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New records, new questions for Marcellus shale

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By Kevin Begos

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NRP acquires Marcellus acreage in Pennsylvania

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

From the PR Newswire on Dec. 20:

HOUSTON -- Natural Resource Partners L.P. (NYSE: NRP) today reported that it has acquired overriding royalty interests in Pennsylvania's  Marcellus Shale for $30.3 million. The acquisition was funded through the partnership's credit facility.

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Colorado gets $145 million in drilling leases

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The Colorado State Land Board manages land set aside at statehood to support schools, including state land leased for oil and gas drilling.

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New EPA administrator will face major fracking decisions

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

The U.S. Environmental Protection is losing administrator Lisa Jackson, who is stepping down.

Her replacement will have major decisions on whether the agency will try to restrict drillers and the hydraulic fracturing or fracking process.

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Hospital hurt by treating injured drillers with no health insurance

By Bob Downing Published: December 28, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The first operating loss in about five years at a north-central Pennsylvania hospital is a sign of the influx of natural gas field workers without health insurance, the facility's CEO said.

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Youngstown rally on Friday behind new Matt Damon movie

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

Anti-frackers will assemble on Friday, Dec. 28, in Youngstown to rally behind the new Matt Damon-John Krasinski movie, Promised Land.

The rally will begin at 12:30 p.m. near the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown, 1105 Elm St. at Elm and Illinois streets. A march will follow.

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W. Va. natural gas pipeline was too thin due to corrosion

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

The 20-inch Columbia Gas pipeline that exploded near Sissonville, W. Va., was 60 years old and was corroded thin, federal investigators report.

Corrective actions were ordered by a federal agency.

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Geauga County residents upset with seismic tests

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

It appears that Precision Geophysical, a company doing seismic testing in and around Chillicothe Road in Bainbridge (Cuyahoga County), OH, has stirred up a hornets’ nest of trouble with local homeowners. They used thumper trucks along the road without first gaining permission from each (possibly any) of the homeowners in the area, and in at least one case lied to a homeowner about what they were doing.

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Royal Dutch Shell gets extension on Pennsylvania cracker plant decision

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Royal Dutch Shell will have another six months to decide whether to locate a large petrochemical facility in Monaca in western Pennsylvania.

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Ohio approves 11 new Utica shale drilling permits

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has approved 11 new Utica shale drilling permits.

Chesapeake Energy Corp. got eight of the new permits: seven in Carroll County and one in Columbiana County.

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Chesapeake Energy's Ohio drilling anniversary

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

A interesting milestone: Chesapeake Energy Corp. is marking its second anniversary of starting to drill in Ohio's Utica shale.

The Oklahoma-based energy company began drilling or spudding its Buell well in Harrison County in December 2010.

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Colorado gets $146 million for energy leases

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

From the Associated Press

 Energy leases brought in record revenue to Colorado in the past fiscal year, boosted by big sales in Weld and Arapahoe counties.

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Drilling loses to hunting of deer in parts of Texas

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

Drilling for natural gas and oil takes a back seat to hunting white-tailed deer in parts of Texas.

Some landowners have provisions in their land leases that forbid drilling operations during deer season.

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Hollywood, its stars weighing in on fracking debate

By Bob Downing Published: December 27, 2012

Hollywood is entering in the heated battle between those who support hydraulic fractyuring or fracking and those who oppose it.

That includes Matt Damon is his new film, Promised Land.

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Landmen may face new Ohio rules to protect landowners

By Bob Downing Published: December 26, 2012

From Columbus Business First:

Oil and natural gas landmen would be ordered to register with the state and provide landowners with disclosure forms on mineral rights leases under a proposal being considered by Gov. John Kasich’s administration.

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New York may adopt drilling rules in early 2013

By Bob Downing Published: December 26, 2012

From the Associated Press:

After more than four years of environmental review marked by escalating battles between industry officials and anti-drilling protesters, New York regulators appear likely to complete strict new regulations for shale gas development by the end of February.

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EV Energy Partners won't close Ohio Utica sale in 2012

By Bob Downing Published: December 26, 2012

From EnerVest Ltd. on Dec. 24:

HOUSTON, TX--(Marketwire - Dec 24, 2012) - EV Energy Partners, L.P. ( NASDAQ : EVEP) provided the following update on its Utica Shale sales process: EVEP has received bona fide offers to purchase its operated acreage in the Utica Shale, and is in substantive negotiations with potential purchasers to sell the acreage. However, EVEP does not expect to announce any agreements for the sale of the Utica Shale prior to the end of 2012.

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Industry has spent $252 billion on environmental compliance since 1990

By Bob Downing Published: December 26, 2012

From the American Petroleum Institute:

WASHINGTON, December 21, 2012 – API released a new report detailing the oil and natural gas industry’s massive spending on environmental performance.

“Investment in our communities and our environment are critical to our operations. Since 1990, our members have spent a quarter of a trillion dollars on environmental protection,” said API Howard Feldman, director of regulatory and scientific affairs API director of regulatory and scientific affairs. “This is part of our continuing responsibility to the communities in which we operate and to the public we serve.”

The Environmental Expenditures Survey conducted by API estimates that the U.S. oil and natural gas industry has invested more than $252 billion to improve the environmental performance of its products, facilities and operations since 1990 – about 65 percent of that directed toward cleaner air and water. The report is based on spending data from representative companies extrapolated to estimate industry-wide performance.

Highlights from the survey include:

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New records, new questions in Marcellus shale

By Bob Downing Published: December 26, 2012

From the Associated Press:

This year was one of new records and new questions for the boom in the Marcellus shale natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania.

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Eco-group supports more EPA research on fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 22, 2012

Statement of Bruce Baizel, Earthworks' Oil & Gas Accountability Project Director, on EPA's Progress Report on its study of the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water resources.

Washington, D.C. & Durango, CO -- Earthworks welcomes today's progress report on EPA's study of hydraulic fracturing's impacts on drinking water.

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U.S. EPA releases fracking study update

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

From the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:

 

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Ohio water district to sell treated sewage water for fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

The Buckeye Water District, a municipal sewer and water authority in Wellsville (Columbiana County), OH, voted yesterday to sell treated sewage water for use in fracking Utica Shale wells. MDN would call that a win/win and smart.

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New Cleveland-to-Oklahoma City flights, thanks to Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

The development of the Utica shale in eastern Ohio is triggering new flight connections between Cleveland and Oklahoma City.

The new flights will begin in February.

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ENSERVCO Corp. adds five Utica shale customers

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

A press release received on Thursday from the Colorado-based ENSERVCO Corp.:

DENVER, CO -- (Marketwire) -- ENSERVCO Corporation (OTCBB: ENSV) (OTCQB: ENSV), a provider of well-site services to the domestic onshore conventional and unconventional oil and gas industries, today announced it will be working under master service agreements (MSAs) with five major exploration and production companies targeting eastern Ohio's Utica Shale formation. Preliminary work with three of the companies has already commenced, although most services are expected to begin in January 2013. Primary services covered under the MSAs include frac heating, hot oiling, pressure testing and water hauling.

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N.J. legislator pushes fracking ban extension

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

From the Associated Press:

A Republican who represents New Jersey's Monmouth County shore communities is sponsoring legislation to extend a ban on gas drilling.

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Surveys shows 60 percent support for N.Y. fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

A survey by the Rochester Business Journal shows 60 percent support for hydraulic fracturing or fracking. Forty percent are opposed.

New York state has kicked off a 30-day public comment period of proposed fracking rules.

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Kasich's severance tax is likely to pass in 2013

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

From the Columbus Dispatch:

By Joe Vardon

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Chesapeake, EnerVerst, Chevron top Utica shale leasing

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

Chesapeake, EnerVest and Chevron are the top compamies for lease acreage in the Utica shale in eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania.

That assessment comes from the investing website The Motley Fool.

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Chesapeake Energy is No. 1 in the Marcellus shale

By Bob Downing Published: December 21, 2012

The Motley Fool investing website is providing an overview look at the Marcellus shale development in Pennsylvania.

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is the No. 1 company for acres leased and for production, it reports.

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Ohio grass-roots group awaits water records from Army Corps of Engineers

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

A press release from the Southeast Ohio Alliance to Save Our Water and the FreshWater Accountability Project received today:

          Grassroots Organization Demands Army Corps Release Records

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Chemistry council supports LGN international shipments

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

From the Center for Liquified Natural Gas today: American Chemistry Council supports international LNG shipments.

Here is the statement: In recent months, more and more American businesses and industries have voiced their support for natural gas exports as a unique opportunity that will create jobs and stimulate our economy.

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Solving Ohio permitting number mystery

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

Ohio reported that it had issued 469 Utica shale permits through Dec. 8.

A week later, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management reported that 13 new permits had been issued, but the state total was 477, not 482.

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Guar prices upward bound as fracking demand grows

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

A litte-known seed in India -- guar -- has increased 15-fold in value since 2010, and farmers are smiling.

It's all due to hydraulic fracturing or fracking in the United States.

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Eco-groups unhappy with California's new fracking rules

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

California is trying to draft first-ever rules on hydraulic fracturing or fracking, and environmentalists are unhappy.

Click  here  to read the Huffington Post story.

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Dominion Resources, Caiman Energy in $1.5 billion joint venture

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Dominion Resources Inc. is forming a $1.5 billion joint venture with natural gas company Caiman Energy II to provide services to gas producers working in the gas-rich Utica shale in Ohio and Pennsylvania.

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Marcellus brine water consistent with ancient brines, study says

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

A press release from Science Daily:

Dec. 18, 2012 — Brine water that flows back from gas wells in the Marcellus Shale region after hydraulic fracturing is many times more salty than seawater, with high contents of various elements, including radium and barium. The chemistry is consistent with brines formed during the Paleozoic era, a study by an undergraduate reports.

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Dengg to head new conservancy efforts in Utica shale area

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

The Western Reserve Land Conservancy, based in the Cleveland suburb of Moreland Hills, has appointed former Geauga Park District deputy director Keith McClintock as its new vice president of conservation.

In addition, the organization named vice president Eddie Dengg with strong Akron ties to head the organization’s new  land-preservation efforts in the Utica shale region of eastern Ohio.

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69 workers to get back pay for water testing at drill sites

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Sixty-nine Pennsylvania and West Virginia workers for a company that tests water samples at natural gas and oil drilling sites are getting more than $187,000 in back pay.

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Maryland panel delays new drilling rules to spring

By Bob Downing Published: December 20, 2012

From the Associated Press:

A Maryland state panel is taking extra time to draft a report on the best practices for hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.

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Chemistry group pleased by economic potential of shale drilling

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

A press release from the American Chemistry Council on the new report by IHS Inc. on the economic impacts of shale drilling:

 The American Chemistry Council (ACC) today touted the release of an IHS Global Insight study that found state economies across the country—not just those states producing oil and natural gas—will reap enormous economic benefits from bountiful and inexpensive supplies of natural gas from shale.

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Eco-groups petition EPA for protection from drilling air pollution

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

A press release from the Environmental Defense Fund:

Today, a broad coalition of environmental, conservation and children’s health groups petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to expand ozone monitoring in communities, near protected national parks and wilderness areas, and at oil and gas industrial activities across the nation to protect Americans impacted by oil and gas air pollution. The petition also requests EPA to issue a state-of-the art blueprint for clean air measures that states and communities can readily carry out to reduce this harmful air pollution and strengthen human health protections. Best in class clean air solutions to reduce oil and gas pollution often can be implemented in a manner that saves the oil and gas companies money and strengthens our nation's energy security by limiting the venting, leaking and discharges of a valuable U.S. energy resource.

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Utica shale to generate 143,000 Ohio jobs, $18 billion to economy by 2020

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

A new study indicates that Utica shale development now supports 38,380 jobs in Ohio and that total is expected to grow to 143,000 by 2020 and to 266,000 by 2035.

That analysis came today from IHS Inc., a leading global energy research group.

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Ohio drilling permits hit 477 with 196 wells drilled

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has approved 13 new permits for Utica shale drilling.

That brings Ohio's permit total to 477 through Dec. 15.

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Shale gas development has produced 38,380 Ohio jobs, study says

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

The Ohio Petroleum Council (OPC) today welcomed findings released today by IHS that place Ohio among the ten producing states with the largest employment gains from unconventional oil and natural gas development.

Nationwide this development contributed to a combined total of nearly 1.2 million jobs in 2012, according to IHS.

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Ohio physician to speak on fracking on Jan. 26 in Streetsboro

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

Anti-fracking advocate Dr. Deborah Cowden will speak in Portage County on Jan. 26.

Cowden, a physician from Jamestown in central Ohio and the head of the Greene County Medical Association, has been a vocal critic of hydraulic fracturing or fracking and its impacts on air and health.

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GE Oil and Gas to build new Canton service center

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

GE Oil and Gas, a subsidiary of GE, is building a new shale gas service center in Canton, reports the ShaleOhio blog by the Columbus law firm of Bricker & Eckler.

The new 24,000-square-foot space in the Mills Business Park on Canton's south side will house 34 workers. It will cost about $4.9 million.

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German Parliament votes no on fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government won votes that will permit fracking to continue in Germany, saying the technique may help the country’s energy supply security.

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Chesapeake Energy is continuing to sell off assets

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is putting more acreage in Texas and Oklahoma on the selling block.

It's all part of the Okalhoma-based energy company's efforts to reduce its debt.

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Norwegian energy company buys 70,000 acres in Ohio, W. Va.

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Norwegian energy company Statoil ASA says it has bought 70,000 acres of land rich in gas and liquid gas in West Virginia and Ohio.

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American West questioning romance of drilling

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

From the Associated Press:

This used to be a land proud of its oil barons. Now the energy industry that has brought wealth and jobs across the interior West is prompting angry protests.

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Schlumberger: Drilling slowdown will hurt earnings

By Bob Downing Published: December 19, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Texas-based Schlumberger Ltd. said Friday that drilling slowdowns and price cuts will hurt its fourth-quarter earnings, and investors responded by driving shares down more than 4 percent.

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Eco-groups want details on New York health impact study

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By MARY ESCH

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Worker killed installing West Virginia pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Officials are investigating the death of worker while installing a natural gas pipeline in Bethany, W. Va.

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Grass-roots group asks Ohio to reject Carroll County mine application

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

 

A grass-roots group on Ohio's Carroll County is asking the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to reject the June 2009 permit application by Rosebud Mining Company for a 9,600-acre room-and-pillar mine just south of the village of Carrollton due to its incompleteness.

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Gulfport Energy increases ownership interest in Ohio shales

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Gulfport Energy announced yesterday they have purchased another 30,000 Utica Shale acres in eastern Ohio for $300 million—or $10,000 per acre. That brings Gulfport’s grand total to 137,000 gross Utica Shale acres (99,000 net acres). Gulfport bought the acreage from its Utica Shale joint venture partner Wexford Capital. Perhaps a better way of phrasing it: Gulfport increased its ownership interest in acreage in which they’ve already invested.

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Pennsylvania farmer jailed over pipeline construction issues

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Marcellus Effect blog:

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BP moves to North Jackson, first Trumbull County test well in April

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By Burton Speakman

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Terry Fleming of the Ohio Petroleum Council retires

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

Terry Fleming, the director of the Ohio Petroleum Council, is gone.

He quietly retired last week, after 26 years with the organization.

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Eni chair: Shale boom in U.S. is changing things in Europe, Asia

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From CNBC on Friday:

The boom in U.S. natural gas production is changing industry dynamics in Europe and Asia, chairman of Italy's Eni, Giuseppe Recchi, told CNBC's "Closing Bell" on Friday.

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West Virginia sees jumps in Marcellus shale jobs, wages, study says

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the West Virginia Natural Gas blog by Lewis Glasser Casey and Rollins PLLC:

WorkForce West Virginia has issued a new report on "The Influence of the Marcellus Shale on Employment and Wages in West Virginia."

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Colorado drillers sue Longmont over fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Denver Post:

The Colorado oil and gas industry on Monday hit Longmont with a lawsuit to kill voters' recent ban on fracking within city limits.

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New York Times editorial: Benefits to exporting LNG

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

From the Center for Liquidified Natural Gas:

NOTE:This editorial from the New York Timesprovides an excellent summation of the benefits of U.S. LNG exports. The Department of Energy (DOE) macroeconomic study referenced below came to the conclusion that “for every one of the market scenarios examined, net economic benefits increased as the level of LNG exports increased…In particular, scenarios with unlimited exports always had higher net economic benefits than corresponding cases with limited exports.” As this finding, and this editorial, make clear, it is time for DOE to approve the pending applications to export LNG so the U.S. can reap all of the benefits of our abundant natural gas resources.

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Science, big pressure responsible for Gulfport's Ohio success

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

Gulfport Energy Corp. has some of the biggest producing wells in Ohio.

The Okalhoma-based company says its science and high underground pressure are responsible its very productive wells in Ohio's Utica shale.

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Columbiana County processing plant set to open in May

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

The Marcellus Drilling News reports that significant progress is being made on a natural gas-processing plant outside Kensington in southwest Columbiana County.

The plant is scheduled to open in May.

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Coast Guard must approve moving fracking wastes by barge

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

GreenHunter Water wants to transport fracking wastes by barge on the Ohio River, but that proposal must be approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Each barge can hold up to 10,000 barrels of wastewater.

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Drilling lease bonuses will impact 2013 taxes for Ohioans

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By BURTON SPEAKMAN

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Activists want more rules on radioactive fracking wastes

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

From the Marcellus Effect blog:

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Oil-gas boom will continue under right government policies, API says

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

A statement from the American Petroleum Insitute on Thursday:

WASHINGTON, December 13, 2012 – API Senior Economic Adviser Rayola Dougher told reporters this morning that continued expansion of oil and natural gas development in America could contribute greatly to the nation’s economy and energy security, but that the right policies would be needed to help accomplish this:

“U.S. oil and natural gas development is expanding and contributing more to our economy and energy security. Our oil and gas companies are producing more and more oil and natural gas, much of it from promising shale reserves in North Dakota, Texas, Pennsylvania and other places. More jobs are being created. Imports are down. And more revenue is being sent to government. Continuation of this trend is vital to America’s economic recovery and long-term prosperity. Recent energy projections and economic analysis suggest it can continue. They also suggest the United States can become far more energy self-sufficient. However, the right government policies will be important to facilitating this.

“The emergence of a new era of oil and gas development has been a game-changer, but there is potentially much more to come because the United States has the energy reserves and the technology to step development up to a new level. Technology is key. It goes a long way to explaining why an energy revolution is happening in the United States instead of many other countries, and it can continue to help increase oil and gas production from our nation’s ample reserves. Out of all the innovative technologies, hydraulic fracturing may be the most significant. Hydraulic fracturing is a safe, well regulated, 65-year-old technology. Its combination with directional drilling has propelled the shale energy revolution, and it eventually could be needed for most of our nation’s oil and gas development. As a result, costly or duplicative regulation of hydraulic fracturing could be extremely counterproductive.”

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Zamarian is new NiSource Midstream president, COO

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

Chad Zamarian is the new president and chief operating officer of NiSource Midstream and Minerals Group.

He replaced Joseph A. Blount Jr., who had held that post since July 2011.

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Halliburton to add 300 jobs and 70 percent will go to Ohioans

By Bob Downing Published: December 17, 2012

The Coshocton Tribune reported last week that Halliburton expects to add 300 jobs at its new facility in Zanesville in the next three years and that 70 percent of those jobs will go Ohioans.

The company is spending between $35 million and $50 million on the facility to service gas and oil wells in eastern Ohio.

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ShaleShock unveils new anti-Marcellus shale song

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

There is a new anti-drilling Marcellus shale song, thanks to the musical group Liquid Me.

You can hear the new song, entitled Wrong, by clicking  here to go to the ShaleShock website.

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Chesapeake Energy seeking to cut 275 staffers to reduce costs

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

From Chesapeake Energy Corp. in a Friday release:

OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA, DECEMBER 14, 2012 – Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) today announced that it has offered a voluntary separation program to certain Chesapeake employees as part of the company’s ongoing efforts to improve efficiencies and reduce costs. The voluntary program is being offered to approximately 275 employees who meet criteria based upon a combination of age and years of Chesapeake service.

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Eco-group hails Westchester County for fracking wastewater ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

A press release from the New York-based Riverkeeper program:

(White Plains, NY) – A coalition of health and environmental groups gathered in White Plains today to congratulate the Westchester County Board of Legislators for unanimously voting to prohibit the sale, application and disposal of waste products from natural gas drilling anywhere in the county. The new law, which applies to all wastewater treatment plants and all roads within the County, bans the sale of fracking waste, the processing of fracking waste at wastewater treatment plants, and the spreading of fracking wastewater on roads including applications for de-icing and dust control purposes. The groups are urging County Executive Rob Astorino to sign the bi-partisan legislation immediately.

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NTSB told workers had to manually shut down W. Va. pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

The Charleston Gazette reports that the federal agency investigating the gas pipeline explosion and fire at Sissonville, W. Va., determined that the company involved had to manually turn off the gas flow.

NiSource Gas and Transmission told the National Transportation Safety Board that its workers had to manually shut down the flow to the line that erupted into a wall on fire on Tuesday along Interstate 77 north of Charleston.

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Could legal challenges slow or halt Ohio shale boom?

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

Ohio's Utica shale boom could be slowed or halted by pending legal challenges, reports Alison Grant of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Possible legal threats include endangered species, Clean Air Act violations and claims that oil and gas drilling in Ohio is abnormally dangerous in a case that comes from Medina County.

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Battle over fracking injection wells spreads to Pennsylvania

By Bob Downing Published: December 15, 2012

The battle over deep injection wells to handle drilling wastes has erupted in north-central Pennsylvania, according to U.S. Today.

A hearing was held by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in DuBois on a proposal for an injection well in nearby Luthersburg.

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Survey shows support for higher Ohio severance tax is slipping

By Bob Downing Published: December 14, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

A new Quinnipiac University Poll shows a majority of Ohioans continue to support a higher severance tax (what they term a “new tax” when asking the question) on the shale drilling industry—especially if it would cut their income taxes. But the simple headline does not reveal the whole picture.

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Judge backs Chesapeake Energy in lease-breaking lawsuit

By Bob Downing Published: December 14, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

A lawsuit filed by 95 landowners in Carroll and Columbiana counties (Ohio) has been decided in favor of Chesapeake Energy and against the landowners.

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Range Resources to cut 2013 capital spending to $1.3 billion

By Bob Downing Published: December 14, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Independent oil and natural gas producer Range Resources' 2013 capital spending budget will decline by 19 percent to $1.3 billion.

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Did Chesapeake err on Utica shale fairway in Ohio?

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

An analyst, Tim Rezvan of Sterne Agee, reports that Chesapeake Energy Corp. has acknowledged that the Utica shale in eastern Ohio extends further south than it thought.

In addition, the gas edge of the Utica shale play also extends further to the west than the company had anticipated, it said.

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Medical experts question threat from LNG shipping terminals

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

A press release received today:

WASHINGTON, D.C.///December 13, 2012///Moving ahead rapidly with plans to approve several new liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals would require “a rapid increase in fracking in the United States without credible science” and “could potentially cause undue harm to many Americans,” according to 107 experts who signed on to a petition sent today to the White House.

Facilitated by Physicians, Scientists, & Engineers for Healthy Energy (PSE), the petition is a response to the Obama Administration’s consideration of fast tracking of the permitting process for LNG export terminals that would trigger a substantial spike in the fracking of U.S. shale gas in order to meet foreign energy demands.

Signed by top U.S. medical professionals, researchers, and other scientists, the petition reads in part: “There is a growing body of evidence that unconventional natural gas extraction from shale (also known as ‘fracking’) may be associated with adverse health risks through exposure to polluted air, water, and soil. Public health researchers and medical professionals question the continuation of current levels of fracking without a full scientific understanding of the health implications. The opening of LNG export facilities would serve to accelerate fracking in the United States in absence of sound scientific assessment, placing policy before health.”

Seth B. Shonkoff, PhD, MPH, executive director, Physicians, Scientists, & Engineers for Healthy Energy (PSE), and environmental researcher, University of California, Berkeley, said: “The question here is very simple: Why would the United States dramatically increase the use of an energy extraction method without first ensuring that the trade-off is not the health of Americans in exchange for the energy demands of foreign nations? Health professionals are coming together today to urge the White House to make sure that we have the facts prior to making this decision. The only prudent thing to do here is to conduct the needed research first.”

Adam Law, MD, physician, Cayuga Medical Center, Ithaca, NY, and Physicians, Scientists, and Engineers for Healthy Energy, said: “Researchers are finding measurable levels of pollutants from this industry in air and water that are associated with the risk of illness. The first studies to describe this are entering the scientific literature and public health researchers are embarking on multiple approaches to study the associated adverse health effects.”

Madelon L. Finkel, PhD, professor of clinical public health, and director of the Office of Global Health Education, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York City, said: “Natural gas has been in these shale formations for millions of years; it isn’t going anywhere and will be around for future generations. Society especially owes it to those living in areas with both active and planned drilling to study the potential for harm (to the environment and to human and animal health) and to act to reduce those factors that are shown to increase the risk of disease and even death.”

Louis W. Allstadt, former executive vice president, Mobil Oil Corporation, Cooperstown, NY, said: “The current unconventional oil and gas drilling process using High Volume Horizontal Hydro-Fracturing is a much more intensive industrial activity than conventional drilling, which was the norm until about 10 years ago. It requires far greater volumes of water and chemicals, as well as disposal of much larger volumes of toxic flow-back fluids. We need to fully study and understand the health effects of the significantly greater volumes of toxic materials that must be handled and disposed of with this process.”

The full text of the PSE petition reads as follows:

“We the undersigned medical and scientific professionals urge the Obama Administration to put a hold on moving forward on the construction of new liquefied natural gas terminals for the large-scale exportation of shale gas to foreign nations. Our concern is that the Administration has not fully examined the potential for harm to health and the environment that could result.

There is a growing body of evidence that unconventional natural gas extraction from shale (also known as ‘fracking’) may be associated with adverse health risks through exposure to polluted air, water, and soil.

Public health researchers and medical professionals question the continuation of current levels of fracking without a full scientific understanding of the health implications. The opening of LNG export facilities would serve to accelerate fracking in the United States in absence of sound scientific assessment, placing policy before health.

As the White House and the Department of Energy contemplate exporting LNG to accommodate international demand for energy, the need for a deliberative process based on sound science is all the more important. We assert that a guiding ethical principle for public policy on fracking should parallel that used by physicians: ‘First, do not harm.’

There is a need for much more scientific and epidemiologic information about the potential for harm from fracking. To facilitate a rapid increase in fracking in the United States without credible science is irresponsible and could potentially cause undue harm to many Americans.

Without well-designed scientific studies, we will not know the extent of potential harm from fracking. We strongly urge the Administration to err on the side of caution as it contemplates national policy regarding the exportation of shale gas.

The health professionals below sign as individuals and do not necessarily represent the views of their employer.”

For the full list of signers of the PSE petition, go to
http://www.psehealthyenergy.org/.

 

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Federal agency is looking into alarm failure in W. Va. pipeline explosion

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

From the Associated Press:

SISSONVILLE, W.Va.: Federal investigators are looking into why no alarms sounded as a massive natural gas explosion sent flames as high as hilltops.

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Push to reveal fracking chemicals is growing, blogger says

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

A blog by Scott Anderson of the Environmental Defense Fund on fracking chemical disclosures:

It’s not often that a new regulatory idea becomes so popular that one or more states per month climb on the bandwagon. But that is precisely what has happened with the push to disclose which chemicals are pumped into the ground to stimulate oil and natural gas production during the process known as hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."

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Exxon says U.S. energy boom will continue

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By JONATHAN FAHEY

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United Kingdom expected to lift 2011 fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

United Kingdom Energy Secretary Ed Davey will rescind a ban on shale-gas exploration, opening the door for Cuadrilla Resources Ltd. to resume its activities.

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Williams takes over former Chesapeake midstream operations

By Bob Downing Published: December 13, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Williams Cos. (WMB), the third-largest U.S. pipeline company, is betting as much as $2.4 billion it can profit from a shale-pipeline partnership that Chesapeake Energy Corp. (CHK) exited earlier this year.

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Appalachian Ohio ready to prosper with shale boom

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

Cara Dingus Brook, president and CEO of the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio in Nelsonville, penned an op-ed column for the Logan Daily News.

She said shale gas development presents an economic  opportunity for eastern Ohio, despite Appalachian Ohio's long history of mineral extraction woes.

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More background on West Virginia pipeline explosion

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

West Virginia has nearly 15,000 miles of pipelines, and they are generally seen as the safest and best way to transport products.

Click  here  to read more from the Charleston Gazette.

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PDC pleased with results from Guernsey County well

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Colorado-based PDC Energy issued its 2013 forecast on Tuesday, along with an impressive production report on its first Utica shale well, drilled in Ohio's Guernsey County, Wills Township.

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BP adding new leases in Columbiana County

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

From the Youngtown Vindicator:

By Jamison Cocklin

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LNG shipments now outward bound from the U.S.

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

Liquified natural gas could be shipped from the United States in the future.

The original plan was that LNG would be shipped from other countries into the United States.

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Ohio drilling permits hit 469 with two more rigs in state

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has approved six new permits for Utica shale drilling.

That brings Ohio's permit total to 469 through Dec. 8..

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Contractors making highway repairs after W. Va. gas explosion

By Bob Downing Published: December 12, 2012

From the Associated Press:

SISSONVILLE, W.Va.: Contractors worked throughout the night to remove and replace an 800-foot swath of Interstate 77 that turned from asphalt to cinder in a massive natural gas line explosion that also flattened four homes and damaged five more but caused no deaths.

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Chesapeake Energy completes midstream sale

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From Chesapeake Energy Corp.:

Recently Completed Midstream Transactions Yield Additional Proceeds of $175 Million; Additional Midstream Sales of $425 Million Anticipated by the End of the 2013 First Quarter, Bringing Total of Current and Anticipated Midstream Asset Sales to $2.75 Billion

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Pipeline explosion, fireball reported in West Virginia

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

There are reports of a major natural gas pipeline explosion in West Virginia, according to numerous news media.

The explosion took place about 1 p.m. near Sissonville north of Charleston.

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Hagan wants 60 percent of drilling job to go to Ohioans

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From  Ohio State Rep. Robert Hagan's office:

State Representative Robert F. Hagan (D-Youngstown) offered an amendment today that would require oil and natural gas companies to hire at least sixty percent of their workforce from Ohio.

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New York targeting methane emissions from drilling

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

New York and six other states are going after methane emissions from natural gas drillers.

The other states are Connecticut, Delaware, maryland, Massachusetts, Rhoe Island and Vermont.

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NGLs travel via barge on Ohio, Mississippi rivers

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

The Marcellus Drilling News reports that natural gas liquids from the Marcellus and Utica shales have been shipped via barge from Weirton, W. Va., to Houston, Texas.

The barge with 1 million gallons of NGLs traveled the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to the Gulf of Mexico and then on to Houston.

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Pa. appeals court orders hearing on unsealing settlement

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

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Ex-controller of Pa. drilling firm charged with embezzlement

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The former controller of a Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling firm is facing federal charges in an ongoing investigation of more than $5.4 million that was allegedly embezzled from the western Pennsylvania business.

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Marcellus shale boom halting Pa. tourist railroad

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The Marcellus shale natural gas drilling boom is causing a southwestern Pennsylvania tourist train to go bust.

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Will natural gas boom change our energy future?

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

Public radio veteran Alex Chadwick recently toured Pennsylvania to examine fracking, the politically volatile exploration technology that has made natural gas the single most important element remaking our energy economy.

He talks with experts on the role the natural gas boom, climate change, and other sweeping events are making us re-think how we get our energy.

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Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon launch anti-fracking video contest

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From a press release:

Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon have launched the
#DontFrackNY video contest and placed a full-page ad in Monday's New York Times to
amplify the call on New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ban fracking for gas in the
state.

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ProPublica looks at exemptions that threaten aquifers

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

"Federal officials have given energy and mining companies permission to pollute aquifers in more than 1,500 places across the country, releasing toxic material into underground reservoirs that supply more than half of the nation's drinking water," ProPublica's Abrahm Lustgarten writes in a new report.

These aquifer exemptions, a little-known part of the government's Underground Injection Control program, allow companies to discard waste freely underground, and in many cases, no water monitoring or long-term study is required.

To make matters worse, Lustgarten found that the EPA hasn't even been keeping track of exactly how many exemptions have been issued, where they are, or whom they might affect.

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Experts say that drilling can be done safer

By Bob Downing Published: December 11, 2012

From the Associated Press:

In the Colorado mountains, a spike in air pollution has been linked to a boom in oil and gas drilling. About 800 miles away on the plains of north Texas, there's a drilling boom, too, but some air pollution levels have declined. Opponents of drilling point to Colorado and say it's dangerous. Companies point to Texas and say drilling is safe.

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New York to begin taking public comment on new drilling rules

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By MARY ESCH

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Air pollution raises concerns in Colorado county

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

The Denver Post reports that the national spotlight is on one Colorado county.

Garfield County is one of the most drilled counties in Colorado and it is in the spotlight because of air pollution concerns from drilling.

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Maryland is nearing decision on permitting fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

Maryland is nearing a decision on whether it will permit hydraulic fracturing or fracking, the Washington Post reports.

State officials are wary because of health ande environmental concerns, but they also see tremendous economic potential for jobs and energy.

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Arab states scrambling to develop shale oil reserves

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

From United Press International:

Jordan is leading a rush among Arab states to develop shale oil reserves.

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BLM eying southern Wyoming for natural gas drilling

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

The Obama Administration is looking at allowing for expansion of hydraulic fracturing or fracking on public lands in southern Wyoming.

That decision by the federal Bureau of Land Management could produce major quantities of natural gas.

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Spills, leaks from drilling reaching Colorado ground water

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

The Denver Post reports that 17 percent of drilling spills and slow releases reported to the state of Colorado by drillers in the last five years had reached local ground water.

That covered 2,078 spills.

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Look at Pennsylvania drilling boom town

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

Drilling in the Marcellus shale came to Towanda, Pa., five years ago.

NPR's StateImpact looks at what's happened in Towanda in a new series: BoomTown.

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Two surveys find support in N.Y., Pa. for fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 10, 2012

From the Associated Press:

 

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California is bracing for shale boom of its own

By Bob Downing Published: December 9, 2012

Is California ready for a shale boom in the Monterey shale in the next few years?

Cloick  here  to read the story from EnergyWire.

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Federal energy production provides additional $1 billion

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

A press release from the U.S. Department of Interior on Thursday:

WASHINGTON – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced that the Department of the Interior disbursed, or paid out, $12.15 billion in revenue generated from energy production on public lands and offshore areas in Fiscal Year 2012 – a $1 billion increase over the previous year, and in line with increased production taking place across the country. The revenues were distributed to state, federal, and tribal accounts, providing important funding and supporting critical reclamation, conservation and preservation projects.

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Americans Against Fracking formed by 100 groups

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

A new national grass-roots campaign against fracking is under way.

The new grou is called Americans Against Fracking.

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Industry gearing up its response to 'Promised Land'

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

Promised Land, the new Matt Damon film about gas industry landmen, will be out soon, and the industry is also ready gearing up to fight what it fears will be an incorrect and unflattering image.

Click  here  to read a good analysis from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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API supports exports of liquified natural gas

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From the American Petroleum Institute:

WASHINGTON, December 5, 2012 – API Group Director of Upstream and Industry Operations Erik Milito welcomed the latest Department of Energy study finding that exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) would benefit the U.S. economy:

“Today’s (Wednesday's)  DOE report highlights the game changing benefits of exporting energy. This is a big opportunity for the administration to bolster job creation and economic growth and to address the backlog of LNG export applications.

“The U.S. is at a historical turning point with energy due to the nation’s abundant natural gas resources. With the right policies, exports can help grow the country’s economy, help reverse our trade deficit and help bring back millions of U.S. jobs in engineering, manufacturing, construction and facility operations.”
 

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Chesapeake, Tervita team up for new Carroll County facility

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Calgary-based Tervita Corporation, an environmental and energy services company, has been selected by Chesapeake Energy Corp. to build a wastewater treatment facility in Ohio's Carroll County.

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Athens County well results look promising, developers say

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

Results from one of the first newly drilled wells in Ohio's Athens County are promising, say developers Randy Wolfe and Brent Hayes.

The well is in Rome Township.

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Jury clears Patriot Energy Partners in Columbiana case

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From the OhioShale blog from the Bricker & Eckler law firrm and the Business Journal:

A Columbiana County jury has ruled in favor of Patriot Energy Partners LLC and nine other defendants who had been sued by family for allegedly using “deceptive business tactics to secure mineral leases from landowners at a fraction of what they were really worth” and then selling the leases to Chesapeake Energy Corp. at a significant profit.

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Norse Energy subsidiary seeks Chapter 11 bankruptcy

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By MARY ESCH

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Two Pennsylvania injection wells are approved

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved two injection wells for briny waste disposal in Warren County in northern Pennsylvania.

The permits were approved, despite objections from neighbors.

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New DOE study supports LNG shipments overseas

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From McClatchy News Service:

By Sean Cockerham

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University fracking study tainted by conflict of interest

By Bob Downing Published: December 7, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

University of Texas research that determined hydraulic fracturing for natural gas is safe was tainted by a conflict of interest involving the study’s lead investigator, an independent panel has concluded.

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Kasich wants gas-oil drillers to hire more Ohioans

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

Ohio Gov. John Kasich still wants more Ohioans to be hired by drilloing companies.

He is not happy at how many of the key jobs are filled with foreigners from other states.

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New York drilling unlikely until late 2013, industry lawyer says

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By MARY ESCH

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Cincinnati City Council wants drilling authority back

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

From CityBeat:

Cincinnati City Council continued its effort to prevent a controversial method of drilling for oil and gas by passing a resolution on Wednesday asking the state to allow the city to make its own regulatory laws.

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Warehouse-offices planned in southern Tuscarawas County

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

A $10 million warehouse and offices for the gas and oil drilling industyry are planned in Dennison in southern Tuscarawas County by a California-based developer.

The facility is planned on state Route 800.

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Two companies make lease offers for Pittsburgh airports

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Two local energy companies are offering to pay the Allegheny County Airport Authority tens of millions of dollars to drill for natural gas on thousands of acres of public land surrounding Pittsburgh International and Allegheny County airports.

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New leadership team at Marcellus Shale Coalition

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

The Pennsylvania-based Marcellus Shale Coalition, the main trade group for shale-drilling operators here, has announced its leadership team for next year.

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Matt Damon's new drilling film set for Jan. 4. release

By Bob Downing Published: December 6, 2012

From The Shale Reporter and Calkins Media:

Matt Damon's new film, Promised Land, will be released on Jan. 4.

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House Republicans fighting federal research on drilling

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

The Obama Administration is getting more push-back from House Republicans about federal research aimed at assessing the health risks associated with a booming natural gas industry.

Click  here  to read the EnergyWire story.

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Ohio's Utica drilling permits grow to 464

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

The number of drilling permits in Ohio for the Utica shale is up to 464 through Dec. 1.

That includes 188 wells that have been drilled, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources reports.

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Triad Hunter eying first well in Ohio's Washington County

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Triad Hunter says it will be the first driller to sink a new Utica shale well in Ohio's Washington County.

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Onondaga council votes to permanently ban fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

New York's Town of Onondaga, a Syracuse suburb, has voted to permanently ban hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

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Shale is new magazine looking at Ohio's Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

Shale is Crain's Cleveland Business newest magazine.

The 44-page first issue is just out.

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EQT to spend $40 million on eight Utica shale wells in 2013

By Bob Downing Published: December 5, 2012

Pittsburgh-based EQT Corp. is planning to drill eight Utica wells in 2013 in Ohio's Guernsey County.

Thsoe wells are expected to cost about $40 million, the company said on Tuesday in ts operating forecast.

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Anti-fracking Youngstown meeting on tap for Thursday

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

Frackfree Mahoning Valley will hold a public meeting from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, in Youngstown.

The keynote speaker will be Ed Hashbarger, a landowner, military veteran and retired police officer, who will speak of his experiences with leasing and drilling.

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Liquified natural gas is a growing and valuable commodity

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

Bill Cooper, president of the Center for Liquified Natural Gas, recently penned a column on exporting LNG that appeared on The Hill blog.

You can read his view on liquidified natural gas by clicking  here.

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Chesapeake to pay $600,000 fine for wetland violations

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

The Wheeling Intelligencer/News-Register reports that Chesapeake Energy Corp. will pay a $600,000 fine to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for illegally filling in wetlands in West Virginia's Wetzel County.

Click  here  to read the full story.

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Youngstown City Council may vote on injection well ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

There are reports that Youngstown City Council will vote Wednesday on whether injection wells should be banned in the city.

Councilwoman Janet Tarpley, sponsor of the measure, said she wants injection wells banned because they have been linked to a dozen earthquakes in the city between March and Decemberin 2011r.

Tarpley said she is not opposed to other forms of drilling.

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Injection wells likely triggered 2011 Colorado, Oklahoma quakes

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

Scientists say the evidence is growing that earthquakes in 2011 in Colorado and Oklahoma were triggered by injection wells.

That evidence will presented this week at at scientific conference.

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Pennsylvania to hold Dec. 12 meeting on new injection well

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

State and federal officials will meet with residents of Pennsylvania's Warren County on Dec. 12 about a proposed injection well for gas-oil wastes.

Click  here  to read more from Susan Phillips of NPR's StateImpact Pennsylvania.

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Ohio Farm Bureau against severance tax for refund plan

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

The powerful Ohio Farm Bureau Federation is opposed to Ohio Gov. John Kasich's proposed severance tax on gas-oil drilling that would be turned into an income tax refund.

The group voted last at its annual meeting to oppose the measure.

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Maryland committee begins drafting fracking rules

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

From StateImpact Pennsylvania:.

Marylanjd's Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission held an initial vote last week.\

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Athens grass-roots group wants 20-mile no-fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

From the Athens News:

Athens City Council has heard from a new group of citizens opposed to oil-and-gas extraction who proposed a 20-mile fracking ban be adopted by the city as part of a "bill of rights."

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Ohio convinced Chesapeake not to draw water from Little Beaver Creek

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

From the Columbus Dispatch:

State officials urged a drilling company not to take water from a Columbiana County creek for a “ fracking” operation because of fears that the action might threaten wildlife and an endangered salamander.

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Oilfield Expo begins on Wednesday in Cleveland

By Bob Downing Published: December 4, 2012

About 3,000 participants are expected in Cleveland on Wednesday and Thursday for the Ohio Oil & Gas Association's Oilfield Expo 2012.

The event will run at the International Exposition Center.

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South African energy company to turn natural gas to diesel

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From New York Times:

In an ambitious bet that the glut of cheap natural gas in the United States will last for many years, a South African energy company announced Monday that it would build America’s first commercial plant in Louisiana to convert natural gas to diesel and other liquid fuels.

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Ohio shale drilling lags behind earlier projections

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

Last March, officials in the Ohio Department of Natural Resources told Ohio legislators that 250 natural gas-oil wells would be drilled in the Utica shale in 2012.

That hasn't happened, the Columbus Dispatch reports.

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Halcon Resources looking at seismic tests in Trumbull, Mahoning counties

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Halcon Resources is seeking to conduct seismic testing in Mahoning and Trumbull coyunties in eastern Ohio.

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Railroad to haul natural gas liquids from Scio plant

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

Genesee & Wyoming Inc. announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, the Columbus & Ohio River Rail Road Co., has signed a long-term agreement to haul natural gas liquids from a new fractionation hub in Ohio's Harrison County.

The rail agreement was signed with Utica East Ohio Midstream LLC. It is a partnership with Chesapeake Energy and two other companies: M3 Midstream LLC (Momentum) and EV Energy Partners, both based in Texas.

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Non-methane hydrocarbons found in air near drilling sites

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From Inside Climate News:

For years, the controversy over natural gas drilling has focused on the water and air quality problems linked to hydraulic fracturing, the process where chemicals are blasted deep underground to release tightly bound natural gas deposits.

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Trains are fueling North Dakota drilling boom

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

North Dakota is booming with oil from the Bakken shale.

It has surpassed Alaska as the No. 2 oil-producing state, behind only Texas.

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Drilling year-in-review for Youngstwon area

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By Burton Speakman

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Federal EPA could have role in overseeing fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

A former EPA official says federal regulators have a role in regulating fracking operations, and could provide research, education and oversight to states.

Ben Grumbles is now the prseident of the U.S. Water Alliance.

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Three drilling bills under discussion by House committee

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the ShaleOhio blog by the Columbus law firm of Bricker & Eckler LLP:

Three bills that haven’t received much attention since being introduced in the spring before the Ohio General Assembly were discussed at length during a meeting of the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee last week.

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An update on fracking legislation from Columbus

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By Marc Kovac

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Pennsylvania researchers studying impacts of shale development

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the Associated Press:

It's early morning and the sun is still burning off the morning fog on Osterhout Mountain in Pennsylvania's Wyoming County.

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Protesters rally in London against fracking

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

From the Associated Press:

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United Kingdom looking at large-scale shale development

By Bob Downing Published: December 3, 2012

More than 60 percent of the British countryside could be opend for shale gas exploration, according to government officials.

Read more from The Independent by clicking  here.

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See the most recent drilling report and an injection wells map From NewsOutlet.org

Utica and Marcellus shale web sites

Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management State agency Web site.

ODNR Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management. State drilling permits. List is updated weekly.

ODNR Division of Geological Survey.

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

Ohio State University Extension.

Ohio Farm Bureau.

Ohio Oil and Gas Association, a Granville-based group that represents 1,500 Ohio energy-related companies.

Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program.

Energy In Depth, a trade group.

Marcellus and Utica Shale Resource Center by Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler.

Utica Shale, a compilation of Utica shale activities.

Landman Report Card, a site that looks at companies involved in gas and oil leases.FracFocus, a compilation of chemicals used in fracking individual wells as reported voluntarily by some drillers.

Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.

Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.

Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.

National Geographic's The Great Shale Rush.

The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.

Buckeye Forest Council.

Earthjustice, a national eco-group.

Stop Fracking Ohio.

People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.

Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.

No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.

Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.

Penn State Marcellus Center.

Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.

Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.