All CATEGORIES
☰ Menu
Ohio Utica Shale

Dominion signs shale gas-gathering contract for new processing plant

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

From Reuters:

Oct 25 (Reuters) - Dominion Resources Inc has entered into a natural gas gathering service agreement in the Utica shale in Ohio, and continues to negotiate with producers for other agreements, a sign of growing interest in infrastructure to recover the area's rich oil and gas resources.

To read more or comment...

New West Virginia processing facility operating

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

From MSN.com.

MarkWest Energy Partners (MarkWest) and Antero Resources (Antero) announced today that MarkWest recently commenced operation of its Sherwood I processing facility and the initial phase of its high pressure gas gathering system located in Harrison and Doddridge Counties of West Virginia.

To read more or comment...

Anadarko has 385 Marcellus shale wells; five in Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

From the New York-based Marcellus Drilling News:

Anadarko Petroleum reported third quarter results on Monday. Anadarko is an independent exploration and production (E&P) company—a very large one—with a good deal of drilling in the Marcellus Shale. Third quarter revenues were $3.33 billion for the company, up 4.2% on the year.

To read more or comment...

A total of 178 wells have been drilled in Ohio's Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

Ohio has issued 431 permits for drilling horizontal wells into the Utica shale.

To date, 178 of those wells have been drilled, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management.

To read more or comment...

French company writes down value of U.S. shale holdings

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Total SA, Europe's third-biggest oil company, has for the first time written down the value of its U.S. shale assets.

To read more or comment...

Superstorm Sandy raises concerns over fracking pits

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2012

From Scripps Howard News Service:

WASHINGTON -- As Sandy lashed the Eastern Seaboard this week, some environmental groups raised concerns that the superstorm’s brute force could overwhelm feeble storage pits adjacent to fracking sites.

To read more or comment...

Marcellus shale photo exhibit in Pittsburgh

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Written by Mary Thomas

To read more or comment...

Consol Energy, EQT see third quarteer earnings drop

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2012

From Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

The two major Marcellus Shale energy companies headquartered in the Pittsburgh area -- Consol Energy and EQT Corp. -- both posted a year-over-year drop in third quarter earnings on Thursday.

To read more or comment...

Mid-stream infrastructure projects are coming to eastern Ohio

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2012

From EnergyWire:

To read more or comment...

Liquid-rich shale driving drilling development, analysis says

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2012

From Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP:

HOUSTON, TX, October 25, 2012 -- With natural gas prices hitting a 10-year low this year, U.S. oil and gas companies have shifted their focus to adding more profitable liquid rich shale plays to their portfolios, leading to a dramatic increase in the number and total value of asset transactions in the third quarter of 2012, according to PwC US. There were 34 asset deals during the third quarter with a total deal value of $31.4 billion, a 131 percent increase in total value over the same time period last year and representing 93 percent of total deal value during the third quarter of 2012. In fact, asset transactions represented nine of the top 10 ‘mega’ deals (deals with values of $1 billion or more) in Q3 2012.

To read more or comment...

Anti-fracking meeting set on Thursday in Youngstown

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2012

FrackFree Mahoning Valley and FrackFree America National Coalition are sponsoring a townhall-style public meeting on Thursday, Nov. 1, in Youngstown.

The meeting will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at gthe First Unitarian Universalist Church, Channing Hall, 1105 Elm St., across from Wick Park.

To read more or comment...

Energy policy gets high rating in Harris Poll

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2012

From the Harris Poll:

NEW YORK, N.Y. – October 29, 2012 – With the presidential campaign in its final days each candidate’s policies are under constant review. While every individual American has his or her own set of priorities as to which policies contribute most to their support of one candidate over another, Americans as a whole seem to be placing higher importance on energy policy (with 77% rating it either very important or important) than on its frequent sparring partner, environmental policy (67%); in fact, among the policy areas tested, environmental policy appears to be the least influential over Americans’ likely presidential choice.

To read more or comment...

New water monitoring on Upper Ohio, Allegheny rivers

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2012

From FrackCheck W. Va.:

The West Virginia Water Research Institute at West Virginia University, with the help of the Colcom Foundation, is expanding its successful Monongahela River water quality monitoring program to include the upper Ohio and Allegheny rivers.

To read more or comment...

Triad Hunter acquires 51,000 acres in Ohio, West Virginia

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2012

 

HOUSTON, TX -- (Marketwire) -- 10/25/12 -- Magnum Hunter Resources Corporation (NYSE: MHR) (NYSE MKT: MHR.PRC) (NYSE MKT: MHR.PRD) ("Magnum Hunter" or the "Company") announced today that Triad Hunter, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company, has entered into a definitive purchase agreement to acquire 100% of the stock of privately-held Viking International Resources Co., Inc., or Virco, for a purchase price of approximately $106.7 million.

To read more or comment...

French energy company writes down value of U.S. shale assets

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Total SA, Europe's third-biggest oil company, has for the first time written down the value of its U.S. shale assets.

To read more or comment...

More facts, not flawed studies, needed on fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2012

From the editors of Bloomberg Views on Oct. 21:

New York officials have again put off a decision on whether to allow hydraulic fracturing in the shale-gas-rich state, saying more research is needed to determine the public health effects.

To read more or comment...

Marcellus shale wheeling and dealing has slowed

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2012

From the Associated Press:

By KEVIN BEGOS

To read more or comment...

Methane emissions less than half of what U.S. EPA had estimated, survey says

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

From the American Petroleum Institute:

WASHINGTON, October 25, 2012 – Methane emissions from natural gas production were less than half what had been estimated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), according to an updated survey by URS prepared for The American Petroleum Institute (API) and America’s Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA).

“Industry has led efforts to reduce emissions of methane by developing new technologies and equipment, and these efforts are paying off,” said Howard Feldman, API director of regulatory and scientific affairs. “This report provides the best and most comprehensive estimate of methane emissions from U.S. natural gas production. It’s based on data from ten times as many wells as the estimates used by the EPA.”

The new emissions survey, which shows that actual methane emissions from natural gas production is 53 percent below EPA’s estimate, is based on emissions from 91,000 wells operated by 20 companies distributed over a broad geographic area. EPA’s data were derived from only 8,800 wells confined to specific areas not representative of the entire country. The report also estimates that venting of methane into the atmosphere during liquids unloading -- a technique to remove water and other liquids from the wellbore to improve the flow of natural gas – is 93 percent lower than EPA’s estimates and that methane emissions from well re-fracturing are 72 percent lower.

The survey is an updated version of the survey first released in June and uses the most recent company data.

API is a national trade association that represents all segments of America’s technology-driven oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 500 members – including large integrated companies, exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms – provide most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.2 million U.S. jobs and 7.7 percent of the U.S. economy, delivers $86 million a day in revenue to our government, and, since 2000, has invested over $2 trillion in U.S. capital projects to advance all forms of energy, including alternatives.

To read more or comment...

State finds few air problems at Wyoming drilling field

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

From the Associated Press:

PAVILLION, Wyo.: After more than a year of testing, a Wyoming state study found no air quality problems near Pavillion's natural gas field.

To read more or comment...

Fracking supports inches up in New York state

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

A new survey shows that support in New York for fracking has inched up to 42 percernt of likely voters.

They support hydraulic fracturing or fracking in a limited area.

To read more or comment...

Would President Romney haver an major impact fracking?

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

From EnergyWire:

To read more or comment...

Chemical industry involved in Senate race in Ohio

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

The chemical industry is using its dollars to support politicans that supports its desired policies.

That includes the Sherood Brown-Josh Mandel race in the Ohio senate race with ramifications on fracking or hydraulic fracturing, according to the Huffington Post.

To read more or comment...

U.S. Geological Survey issues response to earlier blog post

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

The U.S. Geological Survey issued the following response in connection with on erlier post of this blog about radon levels in natural gas samples from Pennsylvania in an article by Dr. Marvin Resnikoff.

From the federal agency:

To read more or comment...

An Ohio Halloween fright

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

From Columbus-based Theresa Mills of the Center for Health, Environment & Justice in her group's newsletter

I dreamed that just as I entered a Halloween haunted house the first monster I ran into was Frackenstine. Just like the book Frankenstein written by Mary Shelley about a creature produced by an unorthodox scientific experiment I noticed that the

To read more or comment...

EPA needs to look at anti-microbial chemicals in fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

From EnergyWire:

To read more or comment...

Gas flaring wastes $50 billion a year, World Bank says

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2012

Flaring is a standard technique used in the natural gas industry.

The amount of flaring or burning off natural gas has shrunk 30 percent since 2005 in the top 20 gas-producing countries, but still accounts for a loss of $50 billion a year in lost energy, says the World Bank.

To read more or comment...

Southwest adding Pittsburgh to Texas flights due to drilling

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Because of demand for travel related to Marcellus shale drilling, Southwest Airlines is launching daily, nonstop service from Pittsburgh International Airport to Houston, starting April 14.

To read more or comment...

Water is big topic at World Shale Summit in Texas

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From OhioShale blog/Houston Chronicle:

The need for huge volumes of water is a growing challenge for oil and gas companies working in shale formations, despite dramatic improvements in drilling speeds that have lowered other costs, energy executives said Wednesday.

To read more or comment...

Anti-fracking activists in Ohio train to fight drillers

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From EnergyWire:

To read more or comment...

N.Y. winery owners worry about fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From the Associated Press:

 

To read more or comment...

Drilling industry created 1.7 million jobs this year, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From Reuters:

By Roberta Rampton

To read more or comment...

Eco-groups want drillers added to federal TRI reporting

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

Seventeen national and regional environmental groups are petitioning the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to require oil and gas companies for the first time to report chemical use to the federal Toxic Release Inventory.

The drilling industry has long used and released large volumes of toxic chemicals. and that has dramatically increased in the last decade with the rapid spread of hydraulic fracturing or fracking in Ohio and other states, said the Environmental Integrity Project and 16 other eco-groups on a national teleconference on Wednesday.

To read more or comment...

Chemistry council pleased by study on gas availability

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From the American Chemistry Council:

WASHINGTON (October 23, 2012) – The American Chemistry Council (ACC)  welcomed a study by IHS Global Insight that foresees significant growth in domestically-produced supplies of natural gas and attractively-priced natural gas liquids essential to chemical manufacturers.

To read more or comment...

Ohio energy group sets up election guide

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From Energy in Depth-Ohio:

Granville, Ohio– Today, Energy in Depth - Ohio (EID Ohio) launched the Ohio Votes: Utica Shale and the 2012 Election Voters’ Guide. Included in the guide is a fact-check on statements made by the presidential candidates regarding domestic energy development.

To read more or comment...

BP wants to ship Bakken oil to Washington refinery via rail

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

BP Plc is seeking permits to ship 20,000 barrels per day of Bakken crude oil to a refinery in the state of Washington.

To read more or comment...

Eco-groups ask Pennsylvania to reverse pollution notifications

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2012

 

Fourteen environmental groups have asked Pennsylavnia's Republican Gov. Tom Corbett to reverse a recent change in how official notifications of possible water pollution related to Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling are handled. But state officials say the public still gets the information it needs.

To read more or comment...

Enviornment America against wastewater shipments by barge

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

From Environment Americxa today:

Washington, D.C. – Today Environment America is delivering more than 29,000 public comments to the U.S. Coast Guard urging them to reject a policy proposal that would allow barging of waste water produced from fracking operations down the nation’s rivers and waterways.

To read more or comment...

Exxon invests in Canadian shale, triggers new interest

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM)’s largest-ever Canadian acquisition is fueling speculation that domestic companies with assets in Alberta’s shale-gas fields will become takeover targets.

Shares of Artek Exploration Ltd. (RTK), Cequence Energy Ltd. (CQE) and NuVista Energy Ltd. (NVA) all surged yesterday after Exxon agreed to pay $2.86 billion ($2.91 billion) for Celtic Exploration Ltd. (CLT)’s leases in the Duvernay and Montney shale formations that span an area twice the size of Los Angeles. Larger firms such as Tourmaline Oil Corp. (TOU) and Paramount Resources Ltd. (POU) also climbed.

To read more or comment...

Shale natural gas is huge, says U.S. Chamber of Commerce study

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

From the U.S. Chamber of Commerce:

WASHINGTON, D.C.—A comprehensive new study co-sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for 21st Century Energy demonstrates that shale energy will create millions of jobs and trillions in investments over the coming decades.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake drops plans for well near Wheeling high school

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Chesapeake Energy has dropped a plan to drill a gas well near a high school in the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia and will look for alternative sites.

To read more or comment...

Five little-known possible effects of fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

From FrackCheckWV:

Five Weird and Frightening Effects of Fracking

To read more or comment...

Inspection capabilities lacking in Ohio, other states, report says

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

From FrackCheckWV:

Lisa Sumi of Earthworks and the Oil and Gas Depletion Center has prepared a report on Oil and Gas regulatory enforcement entitled “Breaking All the Rules.” The 124 page report compares regulation and enforcement in six states, Colorado, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas.

The list of complaints will be familiar to anyone who has read widely on shale drilling. What is new in the report is the attention to detail and the careful documentation, state by state.

“Overall, and without exception,” Sumi says, “inspection capacity for each of the six states examined is egregiously lacking.” The number of inspections for each inspector varied widely , and even where guidelines have been provided, the number of inspections is grossly inadequate. Citizens living near the well sites could play a role, because, other than the workers themselves, they are most likely to discover problems. Sumi suggests a binding policy for inspections of citizen complaints should be part of any states’ regulations.

Infraction of regulations is unevenly assed and frequently not available to the public. Many violators are not issued citations. Punishment in the form of fines or sanctions is erratic, and enforcement, when applied, is too small, hence it is difficult to get operators to come into compliance. Often the fines are set by regulations so old they do not apply to present economic conditions. Repeat violations are not punished more severely, Sumi says.

Staffing is a problem, because the relation between agency staff and the industry is very close. Industry hires away well trained staff, because they can pay more than the agency is allowed to pay its staff. States need to recognize the loss and provide competitive salaries.

“During oil and gas booms, state agencies typically come under pressure from the oil and gas industry (as well as some elected officials) to expedite permits for drilling and other oil and gas development processes. By reducing the time spent on reviewing permits, agencies are less likely to consider site-specific permit conditions, which could ultimately impede enforcement actions,” Sumi says. “Agencies should focus on a thorough review of permits.”

Burden of proof usually lies on the state agency or citizens who claim violations due to pollution. Frequently, neither state agencies nor citizens have the financial resources to do sampling and monitoring to show the industry has impacted air, water or health. On the other hand, industry has a cadre of in-house experts to draw on to counter complaints. The standard of proof is often unreasonably high for citizens unversed in the science and regulations. This allows bad actors in the industry to get away with practices which harm health and environment. Sumi believes the burden of proof should be on the drillers.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake gets $3.3 billion in completed Permian sales

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp. has closed on a previously announced asset sale in the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico.

The Oklahoma-based energy company Chesapeake Energy Corporation said on Monday that it has sold its southern Delaware Basin assets in the Permian Basin to SWEPI LP, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell plc; its northern Delaware Basin portion of the Permian Basin to Chevron U.S.A. Inc., a subsidiary of Chevron Corporation; and its producing assets in the Midland Basin portion of the Permian Basin to affiliates of Houston-based EnerVest, Ltd.

To read more or comment...

Eco-groups want drilling chemicals added to federal TRI

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2012

Seventeen environmental organizations on Wednesday will petition the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to include natural gas and oil drillers in the federal Toxic Release Inventory.

That effort is being spearheaded by the Environmental Integrity Project, a national eco-group.

To read more or comment...

New campaign to export LNG getting under way

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From Reuters:

By Ayesha Rascoe

To read more or comment...

Ohio has 23 or 24 drilling rigs at work

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

Ohio has 23 drilling rigs at work, according to last Friday's count by Baker & Hughes.

That total is the same as the Oct. 12 count and an increase of one rig from the Oct. 5 count.

To read more or comment...

Has USGS been co-opted in radiation debate?

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From the Vermont-based Radioactive Waste Management Association:

To read more or comment...

Reuters: Few shale production numbers available in Ohio

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From Reuters:

Edward McAllister and Selam Gebrekidan

To read more or comment...

Fracked well planned near FirstEnergy nuclear plant

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

A natural gas well that will be hydraulically fractured or fracked is planned one mile from FirstEnergy Corp.’s Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Station in western Pennsylvania, but the Akron-based utility is not concerned.

"We’re not aware of any potential impacts and don’t expect any," said FirstEnergy spokeswoman Jennifer Young today. "We see no reason to be particularly concerned."

To read more or comment...

Halliburton earnings drop in third quarter

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Halliburton Co. said last week its third-quarter net income fell 12 percent as drilling activity declined and costs rose in its core North American business.

To read more or comment...

Carroll County first responders to discuss drilling safety

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

 Tom Cottis, director of Carroll County’s Emergency Management Agency, will participate in a question-and-answer session at the Thursday, Nov. 1, meeting of Carroll Concered Citizens.

Topics such as traffic safety, well fire and hazardous spill response, and law enforcement oversight will be discussed by Cottis and other first responders in the county.

To read more or comment...

Firm drops federal lawsuit against city of Mansfield

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From the Mansfield News Journal:

Preferred Fluids Management LLC has dismissed its federal lawsuit against the City of Mansfield.

To read more or comment...

Two reports say Marcellus shale is cheapest drilling area

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From the Associated Press:

 KEVIN BEGOS, Associated Press

To read more or comment...

After the gas boom from the New York Times

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

From the New York Times:

To read more or comment...

Harrison County No. 1 for natural gas in West Virginia

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2012

The State Journal is Charleston, W. Va., took a fact-filled look at drilling in West Virginia.

Harrison, Wetzel, Marshall, Doddridge and Upshur counties are No. 1 through No. 5 for natural gas production.

To read more or comment...

More on Brinker Storage Field in Columbiana County

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2012

From the Youngstown Vindicator:

By Burton Speakman

To read more or comment...

Anti-drilling activists today address Muskingum Watershed district

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

Anti-drilling activists this morning urged the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District to halt all water sales to natural gas drillers and to stop leasing public land for drilling.

The request came from a national environmental group, Food & Water Watch, and a local grass-roots group, the Freshwater Accountability Project, at a protest and press conference at the Tuscarawas County Courthouse in New Philadelphia.

To read more or comment...

Atlas Resources to pay $84,500 federal fine

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says a gas drilling company has agreed to pay $84,500 to settle alleged violations at natural gas production sites in western Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Neighbors unhappy with drilling plans near Seneca Lake

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

The Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District on Wedneday met with neighbors on Senea Lake in Guernsey and Noble counties about its plans  to lease land for natural gas drilling and to sell water to drillers.

The neighbors are unhappy with those plans.

To read more or comment...

Utica shale should trigger manufacturing boom, speaker says

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From the American Chemistry Council:

CIRCLEVILLE, OHIO:  Ohio can leverage its abundant and affordable supplies of natural gas from shale to spark a manufacturing renaissance in the Buckeye State and across the country, American Chemistry Council (ACC) President and CEO Cal Dooley said Thursday at a 21st Century Manufacturing Task Force hearing at a local DuPont facility.

To read more or comment...

FracFocus prepares for Nov. 1 upgrade

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From the Energy Wire

 

To read more or comment...

Petroleum group knocks EPA on Wyoming water issue

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From the American Petroleum Institute:

WASHINGTON, October 18, 2012 – API Director of Upstream Erik Milito told reporters this morning that results from recent USGS water quality testing in EPA monitoring wells at Pavillion, Wyoming raise serious questions about the adequacy of EPA practices in drilling monitoring wells and testing water samples. He said apparent EPA failures to follow sound scientific practices at Pavillion also raise concerns about the testing it is now doing in its national study on potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water resources:

“EPA’s water quality investigation at Pavillion, Wyoming, adds to our concerns about similar testing it is conducting in its national study. Unscientific testing could produce flawed results that could result in major adverse impacts on shale energy development and the vast potential it has to contribute to U.S. jobs, U.S. economic recovery and U.S. energy security.

“We’ve looked closely at what the USGS did and at its data. The USGS did a better job. Unlike EPA, it chose not to test samples from one of the two wells that EPA drilled because that well was unable to provide representative samples due to its low-flow characteristics. Again, in the well from which the USGS did draw samples, it found that the samples did not contain several compounds of interest previously identified by EPA. In addition, while EPA has yet to acknowledge this, hydrocarbons are naturally occurring and have historically been detected in groundwater in the Pavillion area. It is not unexpected to find hydrocarbons in groundwater in a hydrocarbon-bearing formation.

“The Pavillion analysis is critically important because EPA – as part of its separate nationwide study into potential drinking water impacts – is also drilling monitoring wells and collecting and analyzing samples in other places. If EPA thinks its investigation at Pavillion has produced scientifically useful information, then it may proceed in the same inexpert way at other testing sites, assume it is getting additional useful information, and employ that information to justify changes in public policy.

“The shale revolution is changing the face of American energy development. It’s boosting domestic oil and natural gas production, putting hundreds of thousands of people to work, and delivering added billions in revenue to state and federal governments. It’s also strengthening our nation’s energy security and reducing our trade deficit. But it could do even more, provided the federal government does not create regulatory obstacles based on flawed research.”

API is a national trade association that represents all segments of America’s technology-driven oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 500 members – including large integrated companies, exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms – provide most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.2 million U.S. jobs and 7.7 percent of the U.S. economy, delivers $86 million a day in revenue to our government, and, since 2000, has invested over $2 trillion in U.S. capital projects to advance all forms of energy, including alternatives.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake tops Pennsylvania drillers, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is No. 1 in drilling in Pennsylvania's Marcellus shale, according to a report from Standrad & Poor's, the credit ratings agency.

The Oklahoma-based energy company has leasses on nearly 1.8 million acres in Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake down to nine drilling rigs, report says

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp. had only nine rigs working on Sept. 30.

In January 2010, the Oklahoma-based energy giant had 110 rigs working.

To read more or comment...

Standard & Poor's issues major report on Marcellus-Utica shales

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From the Marcellus Drilling News:

Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s on Monday issued an important new report on the Marcellus Shale and the key role it’s playing in the United States’ natural gas and overall  energy picture.

To read more or comment...

Pittsburgh universities part of new shale website

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs are collaborating on new shale website.

It is www.andrew.cmu.edu/org/marcellus-biblio.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake wells in Ohio doing well

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

CNBC's Jim Cramer came to Northeast Ohio this week including a stop at the Timken Co.'s Faircrest Steel Plant south of Canton.

He interviewed Aubrey McClendon, the CEO of Chesapeake Energy Corp., at a well in nearby Carroll County. That Wednesday interview was taped and added to his Mad Money w/Jim Cramer shows.

To read more or comment...

Land conservation group to get involved in Utica region

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

A land conservation group in Northeast Ohio wants to get involved in Utica shale development in eastern Ohio.

The Western Reserve Land Conservancy, based in Moreland Hills outside Cleveland, is working to develop a new initiative, perhaps including some of the big energy companies.

To read more or comment...

New survey says fracking may cause health problems

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

People living near natural gas wells in Pennsylvania say drilling has triggered respiratory problems, fatigue, severe headaches and skin rashes, according to a study from Earthworks, a Washington-based environmental group.

To read more or comment...

Coalition issues guidance on methane migration

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

From FrackCheckWVA:

Managing stray gas is the subject of a fourth guidance document from the Marcellus Shale Coalition, issued October16th. The essentials of this article were compiled by Pam Kasey as published by the State Journal.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake gets up to $38,800 per day per well in Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 19, 2012

Interesting factoid on Chesapeake Energy Corp.:

According to Casey Junkins of the Wheeling Intelligencer News-Register on May 6, the Oklahoma-based energy giant said it earns $13,000 a day at each Utica shale well for natural gas only.

To read more or comment...

Youngstown to seek leasing offers from drillers

By Bob Downing Published: October 18, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The city council in Youngstown has voted to seek offers to lease city-owned land for gas and oil drilling — despite some heated opposition from people who oppose it.

To read more or comment...

EPA says Wyoming tests back up earlier results

By Bob Downing Published: October 18, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Tests of drinking water near a natural-gas drilling site in Wyoming back up findings that established the first link by the federal government between hydraulic fracturing and tainted water, the Environmental Protection Agency said.

To read more or comment...

U.S. EPA telephone tip line produces mixed results

By Bob Downing Published: October 18, 2012

From Greenwire:

To read more or comment...

California sued over fracking by eco-groups

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

California was sued by the Sierra Club and other groups seeking to block approval of new oil and gas wells because regulators have allegedly failed to consider or evaluate the risks of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

To read more or comment...

Drillers looking for benign fracking additives

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

Drillers are seeking out less-toxic additives to be used in hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

Click here  to read the story from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

To read more or comment...

GAO report says drilling risk is unknown

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Shale gas and oil drilling pose environmental and public health risks, but the extent of those risks is unknown, the Congressional Government Accountability Office says in new study.

To read more or comment...

N.Y. firm expanding to refuel vehicles with natural gas

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

A press release from New York-based Clean Vehicle Solutions LLC:

WEST NYACK, N.Y., Oct. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Clean Vehicle Solutions, LLC, announces its move to new, larger facilities to accommodate unprecedented growth in the demand for natural gas fueling systems in passenger vehicles as well as conversions of Class 2 - Class 8 trucks.

To read more or comment...

Vineyard owners worried about California fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

Drillers in California are eying the Monterey shale for its natural gas and oil.

Vineyard owners there are concerned about such possible development.

To read more or comment...

NRDC looks at new lawsuit against injection wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

A class-action lawsuit in Arkansas against injection wells has gotten lots of attention.

Click here  to read the blog by Amy Moll of the Natural Resources Defense Council, a national environmental group.

To read more or comment...

Is fracking likely in South Florida?

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

Drillers are eying shale deposits in South Florida as a possible source of natural gas and liquids.

But state officials say fracking is unlikely any time soon in the Sunshine State.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania changes water notice policy

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

From the Associated Press:

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has changed its policy for water pollution cases that may be related to Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania high court hears Marcellus shale case

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2012

Pennsylvania's Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a natural gas case that could create chaos for major energy companies and thousands of leaseholders. But the questions from the justices suggested they may be reluctant to cause such disruptions by significantly modifying existing law.

To read more or comment...

Fracking won't create a golden energy age, lecturer says

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 16, 2012

A lecturer on energy subjects writes to the Minnesota Daily and disputes that shale fracking will lead to a golden age of energy in the United States.

Rolf Westgard writes: "... But all this energy optimism ignores the fact that future oil and gas supplies depend on exploitation of 'unconventional' petroleum resources, described in the industry as 'tight oil and gas.'”

To read more or comment...

The (oil) world is a lot less together than it was, Platts blog says

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 16, 2012

The Barrel blog at Platts.com says that unconventional (shale) oil is creating less interdependence globally.

Margaret McQuaile writes: "The (International Energy Agency),  in its latest medium-term outlook, believes the world oil map will be deeply transformed over the next five years as regional shifts in demand and new sources of supply growth continue to reshape the global refining industry and as crude trade becomes increasingly split between the western hemisphere and the rest of the world.

To read more or comment...

Carrizo Oil and Gas sells off northern Utica shale holdings

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

Texas-based Carrizo Oil and Gas Inc. has sold off a portion of its northern Utica shale holdings.

The sale involves holdings in Ohio's Trumbull County plus Pennsylvania's Mercer and Crawford counties.

To read more or comment...

CONSOL Energy reports on well in Noble County

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

CONSOL Energy reported the results of a horizontal production well in eastern Ohio's Noble County.

Noble !A produced peak 24 hour flows of 9 million cubic feet of natural gas plus 10 barrels of condensate per day, the company said.

To read more or comment...

Company uses wind money to develop shale services

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

The Marcellus Drilling News reports that GreenHunter Energy Inc. is using nearly $3 million in proceeds from the sale of wind farm benefits in California to expand its shale drilling services in the Utica and Marcellus shales.

The company is active in Ohio.

To read more or comment...

Devon Energy closing Houston office

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

The Associated Press reported on Friday that Oklahoma-based Devon Energy Corp. is closing its Houston office and transferring operations to Oklahoma City.

The company has about 500 employees in its Houston office.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania investigating methane leaks in Sullivan County

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection is investigating two methane leaks that may be linked to an orphan well in Sullivan County.

Here's what the Responsible Drilling Alliance reports on the problem:

To read more or comment...

40 protesters blockade Mahoning County well on Sunday

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

About 40 protesters on Sunday blocked access to a horizontal well that is being drilled in Mahoning County's Jackson Township.

The protest lasted about five hours.

To read more or comment...

Methane leak rates greatly overstated, energy expert says

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 15, 2012

Michael Levi, an energy expert blogging at the Council on Foreign Relations, takes another look at a study showing high levels of methane gas are leaking at shale fracking sites.

Levi says in part: "In a new paper in press at the Journal of Geophysical Research (preprint here), the same journal that published the NOAA results, I explain why the NOAA estimates are unsupportable. (Short version: great data; wrong interpretation.) I then exploit some data that the NOAA team reported but did not use in their calculations to re-estimate methane leakage rates. I find methane leakage rates that are most likely between 1 and 2 percent, very similar to what previous careful estimates have consistently indicated, but far lower than the rates — as high as 7.7 percent — that the NOAA study claimed."

To read more or comment...

NRDC blogger: Drilling is having big forest impacts

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

Amy Mall is a blogger on shale drilling for the Natural Resources Defense Council, a national environmental group.

Click  here  to read her latest blog on a U.S. Geological Survey report on how drilling in two Pennsylvania counties is impacting local forests.

To read more or comment...

West Virginia groups issue new call for moratorium

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

Eleven environmental/conservation groups in West Virginia are calling for a drilling moratorium in that state's Marcellus shale.

Here is the statement:

To read more or comment...

U.S. met 81 percent of energy demand in 2011

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

In 2011, the U.S. met 81 percent of its energy demand, the highest since 1992. The surge in hydraulic fracturing in shale formations played a major role, and has also resulted in a vast oversupply of natural gas. According to the Energy Department’s Short-Term Energy Outlook by the end of October natural gas inventories could reach a record of 3.95 trillion cubic feet.

To read more or comment...

Could drilling come to suburban Mahoning County?

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

Bu Burton Speakman of the Youngstown Vindicator:

YOUNGSTOWN

To read more or comment...

Drilling into the Eagle Ford shale in Texas

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2012

From Bricker & Eckler, a Columbus law firm:

An economist from Texas A&M’s Real Estate Center recently estimated that with approximately 1,250 wells capable of being drilled each year within the 400-mile-long Eagle Ford Shale in Texas, it will take 16 years to reach the 20,000 wells needed to produce all of the oil and gas available in that play, the Houston Chronicle reports.

To read more or comment...

Report: Leasing bonuses in Ohio on increase

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

A new report by Farmers National Co. shows that drilling lease bonuses paid to landowners in Ohio are dramatically on the rise.

The bonuses in Ohio have jumped nearly 13 times from a year ago, says the company, a real estate management firm for property owners.

To read more or comment...

Athens County well producing oil before fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

The Marcellus Drilling News reports that a well drilled in Ohio's Athens County is producing oil before the well has been actually fracked.

The report came from the Athens News.

To read more or comment...

Range Resources reports production up in third quarter

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

Production in the third quarter averaged 790 Mm cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Marcellus shale and the Mississippian oil plays, Range Resources Corp. reported in its third-quarter financial report.

That, the company said, is a 47 percent increase over the prior-year quarter and 10 percent greater than the second quaqrter 2012..

To read more or comment...

U.S. to use more natural gas this winter

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

U.S. households are expected to use more natural gas this winter becaus temperatures are expected to normal and not as mild as last winter, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Go here to read more: www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm.

To read more or comment...

Texas company drilling New York test well

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

From the Associated Press/businessweek.com:

OWEGO, N.Y.: A Texas company has begun drilling a vertical well to explore the potential of the Marcellus Shale natural gas formation, joining about a dozen others probing the potentially lucrative rock beneath New York's southern tier.

To read more or comment...

Another gas-fired power plant planned in Pennsylvania

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2012

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

A New Jersey firm has announced plans to build a natural gas-powered power plant in Lawrence County.

To read more or comment...

Marathon, partner plan truck-barge shipments at Wellsville

By Bob Downing Published: October 14, 2012

Here is a recent press release from Marathon Petroleum Corp:

FINDLAY, Ohio, Oct. 9, 2012 - Marathon Petroleum Corporation (NYSE: MPC) and Harvest Pipeline Company signed a letter of intent (LOI) on Sept. 27, agreeing to jointly develop infrastructure that will facilitate transportation of hydrocarbon liquids production from the Utica Shale in eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania. The project will result in up to 24,000 barrels per day (bpd) of truck unloading capacity and a terminal capable of loading up to 50,000 bpd onto barges on the Ohio River at Wellsville, Ohio.

To read more or comment...

Ohio EPA holding hearing on hydrostatic test water discharges

By Bob Downing Published: October 14, 2012

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is holding a public hearing on Tuesday on a general permit issued to cover hydrostatic test water discharges of short duration from Ohio facilities.

The hearing will be at 10:30 a.m. at the EPA Conference Room 6A, 50 W. Town St., Suite 700, Columbus.

To read more or comment...

CNBC and NBC to visit Ohio's Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2012

On Thursday, Oct. 18, CNBC and NBC News will be in Northeast Ohio to focus on the developing Utica shale for its "Invest in America" news reports.

CNBC's Jim Cramer will broadcast live from the Timken Co.'s Faircrest steel plant outside Canton for a special edition of "Mad Money w/Jim Cramer).

To read more or comment...

Utica shale tidbits

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2012

1. Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection has approved air permits for the state's first electric-producing power plant to burn natural gas, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported today.

The 936-megawatt plant will be built by Moxie Liberty LLC of Vienna, Va., in Bradford County.

To read more or comment...

Fed's Beige Book monitors Utica shale permits, production and more

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 12, 2012

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book, a survey of businesses published eight times a year, regularly looks at what is happening with shale production. The latest Beige Book, a compliation of reports from all of the Fed's regional bank districts, came out this week.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland had this to say about the latest Utica shale and other energy news in Ohio and parts of neighboring states:

To read more or comment...

Mick Jagger loves to frack

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

The Rolling Stones have a new song out, and "Gloom and Doom" includes a reference to fracking for oil. Who knew?

To read more or comment...

Ohio's Utica shale permits continue to increase

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management has approved 405 Utica shale permits in Ohio.

That is an increase of 23 since the last state filing.

To read more or comment...

Medina County hosting Romanian activist

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

Anti-fracking activists in Medina County today are hosting a Romanian activist.

Vlad Cantuna will be meeting with the Concerned Citizens of Medina County and touring drilling sites in the area.

To read more or comment...

Drillers worried about new EPA involvement

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

From EnergyWire and reporter Mike Soraghan:

Oil and gas companies will soon have to start telling U.S. EPA before they "frack" wells, a development that has caught many in the industry off-guard and rekindled some drillers' most potent fears about federal intrusion.

To read more or comment...

Damon movie attracts Arab oil money, EID-Ohio says

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

According to Energy in Depth-Ohio, the new Matt Damon movie, Promised Land, is funded in part by the United Arab Emirates.

The movie, scheduled to oppen in late December, has Damon playing a landman trying to lease Pennsylvania farmland for drillers.

To read more or comment...

Weirton, W. Va., to tax drillers

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

From the Associated Press:

Weirton is imposing a 6 percent tax on natural gas drilling companies to protect its infrastructure and residents from potential damage.

City Council voted 4-1 Tuesday to approve the new business and occupation tax.

According to The Associated Press, the lone opponent, councilman David Dalyrmple, said the tax is anti-business.

Mayor George Kondik has said the tax will provide funding to repair any damage that heavy drilling trucks might cause to streets.

The revenue also will help the city deal with fire and safety issues, and training related to the natural gas industry.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake selling off acreage in Oklahoma

By Bob Downing Published: October 12, 2012

From the Wall Street Journal:

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is selling a chunk of its holdings in Oklahoma as the cash-strapped natural-gas producer continues to trim acreage to raise money for drilling.

To read more or comment...

Are exports the answer to a nation drowning in a glut of natural gas?

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 11, 2012

The Christian Science Monitor looks at whether the United States should export natural gas to solve the issue of a long-term glut of the fuel.

The CSM writes: "As far as the natural gas industry is concerned, a shift to exporting is a no-brainer. However, this is easier said than done. Before the shale gas boom and the fracking revolution, the US thought it was destined to be a natural gas importer; as such, it does not have the necessary export terminal infrastructure."

To read more or comment...

Ohio gets $1 million federal grant for pipeline safety

By Bob Downing Published: October 11, 2012

From the U.S. Department of Transportation:

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) today announced that 46 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands will receive nearly $44 million in Pipeline Safety Base grants and 23 communities around the country will share nearly $1 million in Technical Assistance Grants to augment state and local pipeline safety efforts.

To read more or comment...

Major Japan utility seeks to buy U.S. shale gas

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 11, 2012

A Japanese newspaper is reporting that a major Japan utility is looking into importing shale natural gas from the United States.

The story starts: "Tokyo Electric Power Co. is in talks with U.S. energy companies to import affordable shale gas amid rising fuel costs for thermal power generation, according to sources.

To read more or comment...

TexasMonthly story asks hard questions: Fracked Into A Corner?

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 11, 2012

Nate Blakeslee at TexasMonthly takes a critical look at the history of fracking in Texas and the current national implications.

Blakeslee asks in part: "Can we trust the frackers to do the right thing? A congressional investigation recently discovered that drillers had injected 32 million gallons of diesel fuel, one of the few fracking chemicals that is subject to regulation, into the ground in 19 states between 2005 and 2009 without obtaining permits."

To read more or comment...

Ohio State Extension holding Nov. 10 shale workshop

By Bob Downing Published: October 11, 2012

From the Ohio State University Extension:

The Ohio State University Extension is hosting a community education workshop on shale energy development on Nov. 10.

To read more or comment...

Report: Shale boom could bring production jobs back to U.S.

By Bob Downing Published: October 11, 2012

From the Houston Chronicle:

The shale gas boom could cut costs significantly for the chemical industry and ultimately benefit the apparel, electronics, machinery and other industries, according to a report released Tuesday.

To read more or comment...

Reports: EPA struggling to deal with fracking issues

By Bob Downing Published: October 11, 2012

From thehill.com:

Congressional auditors conclude in new reports that the Environmental Protection Agency faces big hurdles overseeing a U.S. oil-and-gas drilling boom that’s creating “unknown” long-term health risks.

One of two Government Accountability Office reports made public Tuesday lays out “challenges” facing regulators amid the growth of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” the development method that’s enabling major oil and natural-gas production increases.

“Officials at EPA reported that conducting inspection and enforcement activities for oil and gas development from unconventional reservoirs is challenging due to limited information, as well as the dispersed nature of the industry and the rapid pace of development,” the report states.

To read more or comment...

Energy in Depth weighs in on GAO reports

By Bob Downing Published: October 11, 2012

From Energy in DEepth-Ohio:

Tuesday, October 9th, 2012 |

To read more or comment...

States pushing CNG vehicles

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 10, 2012

Jen Alic at oilprice.com looks at how states are looking to purchase compressed natural gas vehicles to capitalize on low natural gas prices and jump-start CNG vehicle industry and infrastructure.

The story starts: "As America attempts to harness the power of natural gas to its fullest—and to find a non-export-related use for plentiful supplies—there appears to be a shopping spree for natural gas vehicles under way.
From seminars to state commitments to purchase natural gas vehicles, the idea is suddenly a bipartisan phenomenon with more and more states jumping on the bandwagon."

To read more or comment...

Shale energy could revitalize U.S. manufacturing, report says

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 10, 2012

The EnergyTomorrow Blog takes a look at a PwC report that says U.S. shale energy could revitalize manufacturing as well as the chemicals industry.

The blog says:

To read more or comment...

Barnett shale guided Eagle Ford shale development

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2012

From the FuelFix blog by Jeannie Kever:

For decades, most urban Texans thought of oil and gas as a West Texas thing – pump jacks bobbing along the horizon, glimpsed from cars speeding on their way to somewhere else.

To read more or comment...

North Dakota drilling has impact on wildlife

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2012

North Dakota is experiencing a major drilling boom with its oil-rich Bakken shale.

That boom is having a big impact on wildlife, especially ducks, in North Dakota.

To read more or comment...

Breast cancer rates climb in Texas, residents want answers

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2012

Dallas-Fort Worth television station KDAF reports that breast cancer rates are climbing in the Barnett shale area of North Texas and residents want to know why.

State health officials say they cannot explain why the cancer rates have increased in the drilling area around Dallas and Fort Worth.

To read more or comment...

Summit County trucking firm has big announcement

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer on today's Natural Gas Vehicle Summit that was held in Columbus and was sponsored by America's Natural Gas Alliance in cooperation with Gov. John Kasich and the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio:

COLUMBUS -- J Rayl Transport, a regional freight hauler headquartered in Akron, is replacing or converting its 200 diesel trucks to compressed natural gas.

To read more or comment...

Marcellus Shale Expo on Thursday near Pittsburgh

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

Pittsburgh radio station KDKA is hosting the third annual Western Pennsylvania Marcellus Shale Expo on Thursday near Pittsburgh.

It will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Regional Learning Alliance, 8509 Cranberry Woods Dr., Cranberry Township.

To read more or comment...

Report: Shale boom could benefit chemical industry in big way

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

From PwC:

Expansion of Shale Gas Market Bolstering Outlook for U.S. Chemicals Industry, According to PwC US

To read more or comment...

Pro-drilling rally on Oct. 15 in Albany

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

A New York coalition, the landowner Advocates of New York, is scheduling a pro-drilling rally on Oct. 15 in Albany.

It is billed as the largest mass pro-drilling demonstration.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania charities asking fracking questions

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

From the Associated Press:

PITTSBURGH  — Citizens groups and nonprofits around the nation are asking questions about environmental and health impacts of natural gas hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and Pennsylvania charities are funding much of the debate, here and in other states.

To read more or comment...

Wall Street Journal says industry gearing up for Damon movie

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2012

Matt Damon's new film, Promised Land, won't premiere for months, but the drilling industry is already gearing up for a battle, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The film, set to open in late December, looks at how hydraulic fracturing or fracking affects a community.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake, GE partner on CNG in a Box system

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2012

GE and Peake Fuel Solutions, an affiliate of Chesapeake Energy Corporation today launched the CBG in a Box syste, which allows easier adoption of compressed natural gas (CNG) refueling options for large- and small-scale retailers.

The solution was unveiled at the 2012 annual show of the National Association of Convenience Stores.

To read more or comment...

Ohio, 21 other states developing CNG vehicle plan

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2012

From CBS News:

OKLAHOMA CITY — An initiative launched by the governors of Oklahoma and Colorado to encourage the production of compressed natural gas vehicles for their state fleets has produced more than 100 bids from vehicle dealerships in 28 states, the two said on Thursday.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin and Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said the bids represent significant savings when compared to the cost of converting gasoline- or diesel-burning vehicles, freeing up scarce taxpayer dollars for other needs.

"Our ambitious plan that we started more than a year ago is well on its way," Fallin said at the 2012 Governor's Energy Conference.

A total of 22 states including Ohio are now participating in the initiative, enough to demonstrate to vehicle manufacturers that there is "pent-up demand" for CNG vehicles, she said.

Fallin said there are about 11,000 vehicles in Oklahoma's state fleet system and 15,000 in Colorado's. She said 38 percent of Oklahoma's state vehicles have more than 100,000 miles on them and the state replaces up to 700 vehicles a year.

Hickenlooper said natural gas burns cleaner and is less expensive than gasoline and diesel, and predicted there will be sufficient demand for CNG vehicles within two years that they will be widely available nationwide for public fleets and private car buyers.

"In the next couple of years we're going to have cleaner air," Hickenlooper said. "The potential for exponential change is dramatic."

The national average price for a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline is $3.78 compared to $1.35 for the gallon equivalent of natural gas.

Details of the CNG vehicle bids will be released Friday, but Fallin said they include reductions in the cost of a three-quarter-ton CNG pickup truck of about $5,800, or about 16 percent. The cost of CNG compact sedans is about 8 percent less, about 4 percent less for CNG transit cargo vans and about 11 percent less for one-ton CNG vans.

Hickenlooper said he and Fallin launched the initiative as a way to stimulate the natural gas industries in their states, expand the CNG infrastructure nationwide and wean the nation off foreign oil.

Fallin said the CNG-vehicle initiative will help the environment, boost the economy and support job creation.

Earlier this year, Fallin and Hickenlooper met with representatives of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler in Detroit. Fallin said they also have been in touch with officials from Honda.

"Auto manufacturers are excited about this initiative," she said. "We do believe this is a game-changing moment."

Other states participating in the initiative are: Arkansas, Connecticut, Hawaii, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming.

To read more or comment...

Halcon Resources plans to drill in Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2012

Halcon Resources Corp. said it plans to drill between four and six wells into the Utica shale in eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania in late 2012.

The first two wells will be spud in October.

To read more or comment...

New York Gov. Cuomo still wrestling with fracking question

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2012

From the Associated Press:

To read more or comment...

Utica shale tidbits

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2012

1. The Rolling Hills Board of Education in Ohio's Guernsey County is seeking to finalize a lease with an energy company for district-owned land.

The lease will be with Pennsylvania-based Eclipse Resources.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake pleads guilty to West Virginia pollution

By Bob Downing Published: October 6, 2012

On Friday, Chesapeake Appalachia pleaded guilty im U.S. District Court in Wheeling, W. Va., to violating the federal Clean Water Act.

The company intends to pay a fine of $600,000 for its actions along Blake Fork.

To read more or comment...

Bills would deal with chemicals in fracking liquids

By Bob Downing Published: October 6, 2012

From the Youngstown-based Business Journal:

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- State Rep. Robert F. Hagan, D-Youngstown, and state Sen. Michael J. Skindell, D-Lakewood, have introduced companion legislation addressing the concerns of many Ohioans regarding the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing by the oil and gas industry.

To read more or comment...

Ohio legislator proposes drilling safeguards

By Bob Downing Published: October 6, 2012

Ohio state Sen. Joe Schiavoni, D-Boardman, has introduced legislation to improve safety in gas and oil drilling.

Senate Bill 378 doubles the minimum distance between a well or storage tank and an occupied dwelling or house.

To read more or comment...

OEC sponsors fracking programs in Ohio

By Bob Downing Published: October 6, 2012

Here is the schedule of fracking programs being presented by the Ohio Environmental Council:

1. Oct. 9, Worthington Country Club, Worthington.; For the Association of Women in the Metal Industries. Contact Cindy Porter at 937-206-6492 or cindy.porter@mcgregormetal.com.

To read more or comment...

Arkansas lawsuit aimed at injection wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 6, 2012

From the Associated Press:

To read more or comment...

Utica shale similar to Eagle Ford shale in Texas

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

The Utica shale is similar to the Eagle Ford shale in Texas, according to a new report by IHS Cera, a global consulting and information service.

The Utica shale in Ohio and other states is emerging as an important liquid-rich resource, the report says.

To read more or comment...

USGS offers first report on Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

The Utica shale contains 38 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, plus 940 million barrels of oil and 9 million barrels of gas liquids, according to a first-time assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey.

It is the third largest shale deposit in the United States, the federal agency said.

To read more or comment...

Eco-group struggling to win support for drilling legislation

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

For more than two years, the Environmental Defense Fund has been seeking to line up state regulators and energy companies behind a model regulatory framework for shale gas and oil development that protects underground drinking water supplies and public health.

The project is still a draft, according to EnergyWire.

To read more or comment...

Two Pennsylvania grandmothers in media spotlight

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

Two grandmothers in tiny Franklin Forks, Pennsylvania, have become unlikely celebrities in the international debate over the safety of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.

To read more or comment...

N.Y. judge throws out Binghamton's fracking moratorium

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

From the Associated Press:

ALBANY— A state judge invalidated Binghamton's two-year moratorium on natural gas drilling, marking the first time a local law that would ban fracking in New York has been struck down.

To read more or comment...

New York elected officials still concerned about fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 5, 2012

From Binghampton's television station WBNG:

On Tuesday, Elected Officials to Protect New York, representing more than 440 local elected officials from 52 counties across New York State,  released a letter spearheaded by Southern Tier-elected officials detailing serious concerns they have about fracking.

To read more or comment...

Youngstown delays vote on seeking drilling leases

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012

Youngstown City Council on Wednesday again delayed voting to permit the city administration to seek offers for companies to drill on city-owned land.

But the proposal is expected to be approved at council's Oct. 17 meeting, the Youngstown Vindicator reported.

To read more or comment...

Environmental groups struggle in drilling debate

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012
To read more or comment...

Pump jacks may be needed to get oil from Ohio's Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012

From Bloomberg News and the Akron Beacon Journal:

Energy prospectors in Ohio’s Utica shale will need to install pump jacks or other specialized well equipment to coax crude to the surface, increasing costs to harvest an estimated 5.5 billion barrels of oil..

In the western oil-soaked section of the Utica formation, underground pressure is insufficient to force crude to the surface in commercial quantities, said Jim Pritt, a member of the Utica drilling team for EnerVest Ltd., the largest oil and gas producer in the state.

Drillers haven’t encountered similar low-pressure problems on the eastern side of the state, where output is mostly natural gas and gas liquids such as propane, ethane and butane, he said.

"In the Utica’s oil window, you’re going to need to look at moving some tools in to help lift the oil out," Pritt said during a gathering of energy-industry executives in Columbus on Tuesday.

Pump jacks, known as "nodding donkeys," are an 87-year-old technology normally used to prolong the life of oilfields nearing depletion. Pump jacks and other artificial-lift techniques such as gas injection are used to increase pressure at the base of oil wells so crude will flow into the hole at a faster rate, increasing production.

New wells in the Bakken shale of North Dakota and Montana generate enough pressure to flow on their own for as long as two years before pump jacks or other so-called artificial-lift equipment is needed, Jeffrey B. Hume, executive vice chairman of Continental Resources Inc., the dominant Bakken operator, said.

Chesapeake, holder of the most drilling permits in the Eagle Ford shale in Texas, isn’t using pump jacks or similar tools on a widespread basis on oil wells in that part of Texas, said Jim Gipson, a spokesman for the Oklahoma City-based company.

Smaller explorers such as Forest Oil Corp. and Goodrich Petroleum Corp. have been using artificial lift techniques since last year to elevate production rates from some wells in the formation.

In August, Oklahoma-based Devon Energy Corp. reported that it was disappointed in its initial Utica wells in Ohio’s Medina and Ashland counties.

The results from the wells in Medina County’s Harrisville Township and Ashland County’s Clear Creek Township "were not encouraging," said spokesman David Hager.

The firm is continuing to drill a well in Knox County’s Morgan Township and has filed a permit to drill in Wayne County’s East Union Township.

Devon has been drilling farther to the west than most wells being drilled in Ohio’s Utica shale. It had staked out leases farther west than other drilling companies and was focusing on oil, not natural gas or natural gas liquids.

Devon Energy said it intends to continue drilling in Ohio’s Utica shale but is looking to move eastward.

Most of the Utica drilling has been through wells in Carroll, Harrison, Columbiana, Jefferson, Mahoning, Stark, Portage and Belmont counties. That area has been especially attractive because the prices paid for natural gas have dropped and drillers are finding such gas liquids as ethane, butane and propane.

Ohio’s Utica shale holds recoverable reserves equal to 5.5 billion barrels of oil and 15.7 trillion cubic feet of gas, according to a 2011 estimate from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. At current prices, the oil would have a value of $484 billion.

Collapsing prices for gas and liquids have accelerated the shift to the western side of the formation where there’s more higher-profit crude, the experts said.

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. has had the biggest successes so far in the oil-prone section of the Utica, Byrne said. During the first quarter, the Texas-based company’s Brookfield well in Noble County had initial 24-hour production equivalent to 731 barrels of crude, 82 percent of which was comprised of crude and an oil-like substance called condensate, he said.

From Bloomberg News and the Akron Beacon Journal:

To read more or comment...

East Liverpool getting new silica shipping facility

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012

U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. announced today that East Liverpool in Ohio's Columbiana County will be the site of a new silica shipping facility.

The company intends to ship fracking sand from its plants via barge and rail to East Liverpool for shipment to drillers in the Utica and Marcellus shales in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake is testing eco-friendly fracking fluids

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is testing hydraulic-fracturing or fracking fluids composed solely of environmentally benign components in wells, according to Bloomberg News.

The Oklahoma-based company plans to develop a 100 percent green mixture of fluids, a company official said on Tuesday at a conference in Columbus, Ohio.

To read more or comment...

Penn State drilling study scrapped by coalition

By Bob Downing Published: October 4, 2012

From Bloomberg News:

A natural-gas driller’s group has canceled a Pennsylvania State University study of hydraulic fracturing after some faculty members balked at the project that had drawn criticism for being slanted toward industry.

To read more or comment...

Ohio's Carroll County in the spotlight again

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

Reuters has taken a new look at landmen's practices in Ohio and other states.

Carroll County plays a prominent role in that review.

To read more or comment...

Texas quakes may be linked to injection wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

From yahoo.com news:

In a study he recently published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Frohlich analyzed 67 earthquakes recorded between November 2009 and September 2011 in a 43.5-mile (70 kilometers) grid covering northern Texas' Barnett Shale formation. He found that all 24 of the earthquakes with the most reliably located epicenters originated within 2 miles (3.2 km) of one or more injection wells for wastewater disposal.
 

To read more or comment...

Ohio's Yellow Springs adopts community bill of rights

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

From EcoWatch:

On Oct. 1, the Yellow Springs Village Council voted 3-2 to adopt a Community Bill of Rights ordinance banning corporations from conducting shale gas drilling and related activities in the village.

To read more or comment...

New movie on fracking due out in December

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

Lawmakers want thorough reviews of LNG projects

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

From Platts:

Washington:  A group of 20 U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers has writetn a letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu urging him to thoroughly evaluate the environmental impacts of liquefied natural gas exports before handing out more permits.

"We are concerned that exporting more LNG would lead to greater hydraulic fracturing, or 'fracking,' activity thus threatening the health of local residents and jobs," said the letter from the 20 Democrats, led by Jared Polis of Colorado and Maurice Hinchey of New York.

The lawmakers requested that the Department of Energy prepare an environmental impact statement under the National Environmental Policy Act to assess whether exports would increase risks from gas extraction.

"Even though exporting nearly one-third of our domestic gas production certainly constitutes a major federal action, the DOE has not yet conducted an EIS," the letter said.

"Such a review would inform your agency's decision and address the environmental and health impacts in our communities that may result from the opportunity to increase LNG exports," the lawmakers added

On the other side of the debate, a group of Western lawmakers on Monday wrote to Chu urging him to quickly finish a study on the macroeconomic impacts of LNG exports and approve additional export permits.

DOE has received applications to export a combined 27.4 Bcf/d of gas as LNG to free trade agreement countries, and to export a combined 19.7 Bcf/d of gas to non-FTA countries, according to its website.
 

To read more or comment...

N.Y. group wants comprehensive fracking study

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

A statement from the Catskill Moutainkeeper, a New York-based environmental group:

To read more or comment...

Water tests in Dimock, Pa., still debated

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2012

From the Wilkes-Barre Citizens' Voice:

More than two years after the state halted a natural gas driller's operations in a corner of Dimock Township, the right answer to a last question is all that stands between drill bits and earth.

To read more or comment...

Cementing is the key to well safety

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2012

EnergyWire reports that cementing is the key to well safety in shale wells in Ohio's Utica shale and other plays.

Click  here  to read the full story..

To read more or comment...

Reuters looks at Chesapeake's "land grabs" in Texas, Ohio

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2012

Chesapeake Energy Corp.'s use of the Texas law is among the latest examples of how the company executes what it calls a "land grab."

It is an aggressive leasing strategy intended to lock up prospective drilling sites and lock out competitors.

To read more or comment...

Appalachia Resist plans rally in Athens

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2012

A grass-roots group, Appalachian Resist, is planning a Wednesday rally in Athens.

The rallt at 1:30 p.m. at the Athens County Courthouse is tied to a pretrial hearing for anti-fracking activist Madeline ffitch, who is facing criminal charges.

To read more or comment...

Shell offers to make payments for lost taxes

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2012

From the Associated Press:

MONACA, Pa. : Shell Oil Co. is offering to make payments to replace lost local taxes if a multi-billion dollar petrochemical plant is built in western Pennsylvania.

The Beaver County Commissioners say in a statement issued Monday that Shell has offered to make the maximum payments-in-lieu-of-taxes if it builds the plant, which would convert natural gas into other consumer and industrial products such as plastics.

State officials have offered Shell significant tax breaks if it builds the plant, but that deal could have squeezed the local school board and government of revenue.

Local officials say they’re pleased with Shell’s high level of engagement with the community. They hope the plant will lead to an industrial resurgence in the area.

The proposed site is about 40 miles north of Pittsburgh.

To read more or comment...

Six Pennsylvania counties produce 85 percent of natural gas

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2012

For the first six months of 2012, more than 85 percent of Pennsylvania's production of Marcellus shale natural gas came from six counties: Bradford, Susquehanna, Lycoming, Tioga, Washington and Greene counties.

Bradford County is No. 1 and produced 234 million MCF of natural gas or 26 percent of the state total, the Marcellus Drilling News reported.

To read more or comment...

New company involved in Ohio shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2012

There is a new company involved in Ohio's Utica shale: Colorado-based 1st NRG Corp.

The firm today announced that it has signed a letter of intent with a private third party to initiate development of about 7,150 acres in eastern Ohio.

To read more or comment...

FirstEnergy looking at natural gas for one plant

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2012

The FirstEnergy Corp. is looking at burning natural gas to produce electricity at one of its largest coal-burning power plants.

The Akron-based utility is looking at adding natural gas to coal to produce power at its Hatfield’s Ferry plant at Masontown, Pa., on the Monongahela River.

To read more or comment...

Wyoming town back in the news again

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2012

from the Associated Press:

CHEYENNE, Wyo.:  New groundwater testing in Wyoming shows lower levels of the carcinogen benzene than what the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reported when it linked contaminants in two water wells to hydraulic fracturing, but only one well was tested this time.

To read more or comment...

SUBSCRIBE VIA RSS

OHIO.COM VIDEOS

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

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.