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Ohio Utica Shale

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.

If deemed to be acceptable, Wednesday's bids by Consol Energy Inc. and EQT Corp. could generate anywhere from $20.8 million to $44 million in upfront payments for the authority as well as ongoing royalties of 18 percent on all gas, oil or hydrocarbons produced by the drilling.

"On the face of it, they look very promising to me," county executive Rich Fitzgerald said.

Consol and EQT were the only two companies to bid on the 9,263 acres available for drilling at the airports in Findlay and West Mifflin.But neither Mr. Fitzgerald nor the airport authority is counting the cash just yet, saying both offers must be reviewed to determine if they are valid and meet the requirements of the bidding.

In the bidding, EQT offered a per-acre lease bonus of $4,750, while Consol advanced a lease bonus of $2,250 per acre.

Based on the 9,263 acres available, the EQT lease bonus would generate $44 million for the authority, while the Consol bid would produce slightly less than half of that, $20.8 million.

Mr. Fitzgerald said he would like to see any money generated by the drilling to be used to help reduce the airline costs and to attract more flights at Pittsburgh International. Federal Aviation Administration rules generally require that revenues collected on airport properties be used to benefit aviation projects.




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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.