All CATEGORIES
☰ Menu
Ohio Utica Shale

Range Resources hits record-high natural gas production

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

Texas-based Range Resources, a major player in the Marcellus shale, reported record third-quarter production, due largely to its Pennsylvania operations.

It produced a daily average of 1.2 billion cubic feet per day, up 26 percent from the previous quarter.

Click  here  to read more from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

To read more or comment...

Owners of Capline kicking off review of crude oil pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From Marathon Petroleum:

FINDLAY, Ohio, Oct. 30, 2014 - Today, the owners of Capline, a crude oil pipeline system that originates in St. James, La. and terminates in Patoka, Ill., announce a study to examine the potential commercial opportunities for future Capline operations. This analysis is being conducted to address the expanding crude oil supply in North America and the significant changes in crude oil demand patterns. As a part of this study, a connection to the proposed Diamond Pipeline will be evaluated. Completion of the study is anticipated in the first quarter of 2015.

###

About Capline

To read more or comment...

Texas tightening rules on drilling waste injection wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

The Texas Rairoad  Comission that oversees gas-oil drilling in that state has tightened rules on drilling waste injection wells, in the wake of earthquakes that hit North Texas.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

BHP Billiton is marketing its Fayettesville shale holdings

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

BHP Billiton Ltd. is marketing its assets in the Fayetteville shale in Arkansas.

The company had purchased the Arkansas asets in 2011 from Chesapeake Enwergy Corp. for $4.75 billion.

Click  here  to read more from Bloomberg.

To read more or comment...

Rover Pipeline is full booked for Utica, Marcellus natural gas

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

A Texas-based pipeline company has fully booked capacity on the proposed Rover Pipeline that will carry Utica and Marcellus shale natural gas across northern Ohio.

Energy Transfer Partners in Dallas announced on Thursday that the pipeline is fully subscribed through 15-year and 20-year contracts to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.

That’s enough natural gas is enough to heat 32,000 to 36,000 American homes for one year.

The 800-mile pipeline is estimated to cost up to $4.4 billion.

To read more or comment...

U.S. crude oil exports rising, some go to Europe, Asia

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administartion today:

 

The United States exported 401,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) of crude oil in July 2014, the highest level of exports in 57 years and the second highest monthly export volume since 1920, when EIA's published data starts. Recent crude oil exports are also noteworthy for both their origins and destinations. As a result of existing U.S. crude oil export restrictions, most U.S. crude exports are sourced domestically and are sent only to Canada. However, since April, crude exports have included modest amounts of Canadian-produced barrels that were moved through the United States and then re-exported to Switzerland, Spain, Italy, and Singapore.

To read more or comment...

Second lawsuit challenges state park, forest drilling in Pa.

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

An environmental group has filed a second lawsuit challenging a plan by Pennsylvania Gov. Corbett to drill in state parks and forests.

The suit was filed by the Delaware Riverkeeper Network.

It challenges Corbett's executive order from last May to allow more drilling to plug budget gaps.

It is the second lawsuit challneging state park and state forest drilling in Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Utica shale is moving out of the Marcellus shale shadows

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

The Utica shale has been overshadowed by the neighboring Marcellus shale, but it's time that should change, says NASDAQ.com.

The Utica shale is coming into it sown, the report says.

Click  here  to read the full story..

To read more or comment...

Fracking saved motorists 94 cents a gallon in 2013, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Thursday:

WASHINGTON, October 30, 2014 – The U.S. energy renaissance has been driven by innovations in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, which were responsible for about 48 percent of U.S. oil production and shaved up to $0.94 per gallon from fuel prices in 2013, according to a new report.

“For the first time in generations, surging domestic production is driving our energy security and creating large benefits for consumers,” said API Vice President for Regulatory and Economic Policy Kyle Isakower. “Over the last five years, nearly every barrel of new U.S. production can be attributed to the use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies, and that production is reshaping global markets in a way that is strengthening the U.S. both economically and diplomatically.”

The study, by ICF International, compared historical price and production data from 2008 to 2013 against a scenario without advanced horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. Without the technologies, ICF estimated that international crude oil prices per barrel would have averaged $122 to $150 in 2013 – an increase of $12 to $40. The corresponding discount on gasoline and other refined products was $0.29 to $0.94 per gallon. In total, U.S. consumers saved an estimated $63 to $248 billion in 2013. From 2008 to 2013, the cumulative savings for U.S. consumers ranged from $165 to $624 billion.

“It’s important for policymakers to recognize that the U.S. energy revolution was not a lucky accident, but the result of decades of American innovation aimed at unlocking our resources here at home,” said Isakower. “To build that momentum and strengthen our position as an energy superpower, it’s critical that policymakers turn aside duplicative regulations on hydraulic fracturing and ensure that U.S. consumers can benefit from energy production on federal lands that remain off-limits.”

The study also found that U.S. oil production utilizing horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing totaled 4.78 million barrels per day in 2013, accounting for 48% of all production – up from 11 percent in 2008. Although ICF limited its analyses to crude production and liquid fuels like gasoline, an earlier study by IHS estimated that the average U.S. household saved about $1,200 in 2012 from unconventional production of both oil and natural gas, a cumulative savings of about $163 billion.
 

To read more or comment...

OPEC tests how low prices must go to make shale unprofitable

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

OPEC is resisting pressure to cut oil production while demand slumps as it tests how low prices must go to make U.S. shale oil unprofitable, Bloomberg News reports.

As producers become more efficient, that floor is sinking, it said.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries boosted output by the most in 13 months in September, even as crude plunged into a bear market and demand growth weakens to a five-year low, according to the International Energy Agency.

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, the largest and third-largest members of OPEC, indicated the price slump doesn’t warrant immediate production cuts, the IEA said.

To read more or comment...

FirstEnergy adds new transmission line in Mahoning County

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From Akron's FirstEnergy Corp.:

 

New Transmission Line Constructed in Ohio Edison’s Eastern Ohio

Area to Help Support Shale Gas Industry

To read more or comment...

Study says lifting crude export ban won't raise gasoline prices

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

A press release received on Thursday:

New Government Study Suggests Lifting Ban on Oil Exports

Will Not Raise Gasoline Prices

 

To read more or comment...

Oil Field Expo set for Dec. 3-4 in Cleveland's I-X Center

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From the Ohio Oil and Gas Association:


COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 29, 2014 — The Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) is hosting its 4th Annual Oilfield Expo and Technical Conference at Cleveland’s I-X Center December 3 - 4. Ohio’s premier oil and gas industry event, OOGA’s Oilfield Expo offers training sessions, technical workshops, industry expert panels and 50,000 square feet of trade show floor.

New features for the 2014 Expo include the Oilfield Celebration Reception, a networking event that will be held on the trade show floor, and the Technical Conference, which includes a featured presentation about applying the technique of horizontal drilling for use in conventional oil and gas wells.

“This is our fourth year hosting the Oilfield Expo and I believe this is our best one yet,” said Tom Stewart, executive vice president of OOGA. “The event is a prime opportunity for oil and gas professionals to make new contacts, learn about technological advancements and emerging issues and hear from industry leaders. It’s also ideal for companies and individuals who want to learn about Ohio’s expanding energy sector.”

For more information and to register online for the 2014 Oilfield Expo and Technical Conference, visit http://ooga.org/expo/.

About the Ohio Oil and Gas Association
The Ohio Oil and Gas Association is a trade association with more than 3,300 members involved in the exploration, production and development of crude oil and natural gas resources within the state of Ohio. For more information, visit www.ooga.org.

To read more or comment...

SandBox Logistics expands into Marcellus, Utica regions

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From Texas-based SandBox Logistics on Thursday:

(30 October, 2014, Houston, TX) Today, SandBox Logistics (“SandBox”)

announced that it signed a contract with U.S. Well Services

 

To read more or comment...

Stover picked as president, CEO at Noble Energy

By Bob Downing Published: October 31, 2014

From Noble Energy last week:

HOUSTON , Oct. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NBL) announced today that the Board of Directors has elected David L. Stover as President and Chief Executive Officer, succeeding Charles D. Davidson as CEO. Mr. Stover's election is consistent with the management succession plan disclosed in April of this year when it was announced that Mr. Davidson would be retiring on May 1, 2015 . Mr. Stover has previously been serving as the Company's President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Davidson will continue to serve as the Company's Chairman until the 2015 Annual Meeting at which time he will be leaving the Board of Directors. The Board also announced that it intends to elect Mr. Stover as Chairman of the Board immediately following the 2015 Annual Meeting.

The Company also announced that Susan M. Cunningham has been elected Executive Vice President responsible for Noble Energy's global Exploration, New Ventures , Frontier, Environmental, Health, Safety, Regulatory and Business Innovation activities. In addition, Gary W. Willingham has been elected Executive Vice President responsible for Noble Energy's global Production, Drilling, Major Projects and Supply Chain activities. Both Ms. Cunningham and Mr. Willingham will report directly to Mr. Stover .

Noble Energy is a leading independent energy company engaged in worldwide oil and natural gas exploration and production. The Company has core operations onshore in the U.S., primarily in the DJ Basin and Marcellus Shale , in the Gulf of Mexico , offshore Eastern Mediterranean, and offshore West Africa. Noble Energy is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is traded under the ticker symbol NBL. Further information is available at www.nobleenergyinc.com.

To read more or comment...

Toxic air samples found at drill sites in Ohio, five other states

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From the Athens County Fracking Action Network and Appalachia Resist! today:

Toxic Chemical Emissions Found Near Oil and Gas Development Sites

Athens County Fracking Action Network (ACFAN) and Appalachia Resist! participate in new 6-state peer-reviewed article & report featuring community air monitoring

ATHENS, OH –– Community members from six states -- Arkansas, Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Wyoming -- sampled the air near oil and gas facilities, including fracking sites, and found that the air contains dangerous toxics that are linked to health problems. Athens County Fracking Action Network and Appalachia Resist! worked together to obtain air samples near injection wells and open frack waste pits. Monitoring results from the 6-state sampling project showed that some chemical levels were hundreds of times higher than what some federal agencies have determined to be “safe.”

To read more or comment...

Latinos demand fracking answers from Gov. Brown, candidates

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From a press release received today:

As California heads to the polls next week, Latinos demand answers from Governor Brown and other candidates on fracking

With Latino neighborhoods at the front lines of pollution from oil extraction, groups call on the Governor to use his executive power to stop fracking

Los Angeles, CA - As voters head to the polls next week in California,a coalition of Latino groups released a letter addressed to Governor Brown and other candidates running for office to commit to stopping fracking. The groups — including leaders from Presente.org, Azul, Mujeres de la Tierra, William C. Velasquez Institute, Latino Outdoors, Voces Verdes, Americas for Conservation + the Arts and the Americas Latino Eco Festival, and Stewards of the Earth — are urging Governor Brown to use his executive authority to place an immediate moratorium on hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and other high-intensity extraction techniques.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania activist won't be fined, jailed, judge says

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

A Susquehanna County judge has ruled that anti-fracking activist Vera Scroggins won't be fined or jailed for violating an order to keep her away from Pennsylvania drilling sites operated by Cabot Oil and Gas, says NPR's StateImpact Pennsylvania.

Click  here  to read the full story..

To read more or comment...

Spectra Energy Partners joining PennEast Pipeline project

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From Spectra Energy Partners:

 PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC, announced that Spectra Energy Partners (NYSE: SEP) has joined in the development of its PennEast Pipeline. The proposed interstate natural gas pipeline will transport clean, affordable and abundant natural gas to reliably meet growing energy demand in New Jersey and Pennsylvania while providing environmental and economic benefits to the region.

Spectra Energy Partners becomes the sixth member of the PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC. It joins AGL Resources; NJR Pipeline Company, a subsidiary of New Jersey Resources; PSEG Power LLC; South Jersey Industries; and UGI Energy Services (UGIES), a subsidiary of UGI Corporation. Spectra Energy Partners and PSEG Power each have a 10 percent interest in PennEast; the remaining member companies each have a 20 percent interest. UGIES is the project manager for the development of the project and will operate the pipeline.

“Spectra Energy Partners is one of the leading pipeline and midstream companies in North America,” said Peter Terranova, chair of the PennEast Pipeline Company Board of Managers. “Its involvement underscores the vital role PennEast Pipeline has in addressing fluctuating prices and supply constraints experienced by natural gas and electric customers.”

To read more or comment...

Cold weather drives forecast of higher CO2 emissions in 2014

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

In the long term, energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are driven by economic and efficiency trends and changes in the fuel mix. But weather fluctuations, which drive the level of energy use for both heating and cooling, are a very significant factor affecting year-to-year variation in fossil fuel consumption and their resulting emissions.

Read More ›

To read more or comment...

American Energy Parmian Basin to offer $800 million in notes

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From American Energy Permian Basin on Wednesday:

 OKLAHOMA CITY, OCTOBER 29, 2014: American Energy – Permian Basin, LLC (AEPB), an affiliate of American Energy Partners, LP (AELP), announced today that its affiliate, American Energy Permian Holdings, LLC, intends to offer $800 million of exchangeable junior subordinated notes due 2022 (Notes) in an unregistered offering to institutional investors.

The net proceeds from the offering of the Notes will be contributed to AEPB and used by it to fund pending acquisitions, accelerate development drilling, pay related fees, repay all outstanding borrowings under its revolving credit facility and for general corporate purposes.

To read more or comment...

Stricter refinery regulations would be step backwards, API says

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Wednesday:

WASHINGTON, October 29, 2014 – Despite EPA's conclusion that existing refinery regulations protect public health, the agency has proposed additional regulations that could cost an initial $20 billion and could actually lead to higher greenhouse gas emissions, API told the agency in its public comments.

“Refineries have been reducing emissions for decades under voluntary programs and in compliance with existing regulations, and air quality continues to improve as a result,” said API Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman. “EPA’s proposed regulations could drive up costs and roll back environmental progress, forcing refineries to increase emissions by installing hundreds of costly new flare systems at a time when industry has been working with EPA to reduce flaring.”

Companies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars to reduce emissions by installing flare gas recovery and flare minimization systems to reduce flaring and greenhouse gas emissions – progress that could be reversed under the proposal rule, according to Feldman.

“Even without requirements that would result in the addition of hundreds of new flare systems to refineries nationwide, the cost of this proposal will still significantly exceed $100 million per year, while leading to little or no reduction in emissions,” Feldman said. “Our industry remains committed to working constructively with the agency to develop common-sense rules that control costs while improving environmental performance.”
 

To read more or comment...

400 families evacuated after well rupture in Jefferson County

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

Four hundred families were evacuated late Tuesday after a well ruptured in Jefferson County in eastern Ohio.

The residents were later allowed to return to their homes.

The well is being drilled by a subsidiary of American Energy Partners.

Click  here  to read today's story from the Columbus Dispatch.

To read more or comment...

Deepwater exploration could boost Trinidad and Tobago oil, gas

By Bob Downing Published: October 30, 2014

From GlobalData on Wednesday:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Increasing Deepwater Exploration Could Refuel Trinidad and Tobago’s Oil and Gas Industry, says GlobalData Analyst

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 29 October 2014 - Exploring deep and ultra-deepwater areas could boost Trinidad and Tobago’s (T&T) oil and gas industry, which has $6.2 billion of investment planned over the next two years, helping to offset the government’s apparent move away from an energy-dependent economy, says an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

Kasich is very unhappy with Ohio's proposed severance tax

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Tuesday had strong words for the Ohio gas-and-oil drillers and the Ohio Legislature over what Ohio will do with its proposed severance tax.

Kasich called the current plan, a 2.5 percent severance tax, to be a "complete and total ripoff" of taxpayers.

Click  here  to read the latest story.

To read more or comment...

Hess Corp. adds 10 wells to joint Utica acreage in 3Q 2014

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

The Hess Corp. offered two lines of injformation about the Utica shale in its 3Q 2014 report.

Here is what is said:

Utica (Onshore U.S.):  On the Corporation’s joint venture acreage, ten wells were drilled in the third quarter of 2014. Production increased to approximately 11,000 boepd for the quarter.

To read more or comment...

Asset sales triggers third-quarter profits of $1 billion for Hess Corp.

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

New York-based Hess Corp. today reported third quarter profits jumped 140 percent to $1 billion, as the company enjoys the proceeds of a massive assets sale.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Expanded Louisiana ethylene plant to start up in November

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

From Williams Partners today:

 

Williams Partners L.P. (NYSE: WPZ) today announced it expects its expanded Geismar Olefins plant to begin manufacturing ethylene for sale in November. That timeline is consistent with the financial guidance the partnership provided in July.

Williams Partners' expanded Geismar olefins plant now has a capacity of 1.95 billion pounds of ethylene per year. (Photo: Business Wire)

To read more or comment...

Condensate pipeline catches fire in Ohio's Monroe County

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

From staff and wrire reports:

Officials say no one was injured when a pipeline in southeast Ohio carrying oil-like condensate from drilling caught fire Tuesday.

The Columbus Dispatch reports (http://bit.ly/1wCjs5D ) the pipeline fire began near Cameron in Monroe County early Tuesday morning and burned for several hours.

It burned numerous acres of woodland in the area before the pipeline pressure dropped and the fire could burn itself out.

To read more or comment...

American Energy Partners adds 27,000 acres in Texas

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

From American Energy Partners today:

 

OKLAHOMA CITY, OCTOBER 28, 2014: American Energy – Permian Basin, LLC (AEPB), an affiliate of American Energy Partners, LP (AELP), today announced that since July 31, 2014 it has completed or entered into definitive agreements with multiple parties to acquire net production of approximately 1,400 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day and approximately 27,000 net acres of leasehold in the Wolfcamp Shale play in the central Midland Basin. These assets are located primarily in Reagan County, Texas, and will be acquired for an aggregate purchase price of approximately $726 million. On a net effective acre basis, AEPB is acquiring approximately 110,000 net acres and after giving effect to the value of the acquired production, AEPB is acquiring its new leasehold for approximately $6,000 per net effective acre.

With the addition of these assets to its existing leasehold position of 63,000 net acres, AEPB believes it will have established one of the industry’s premier leasehold positions in the Wolfcamp Shale play in Reagan County. AEPB anticipates financing the transactions with proceeds from a privately-placed offering of exchangeable notes to institutional investors during the next 60 days. The pending acquisitions are expected to close by year-end 2014, subject to completion of customary due diligence and satisfaction of other closing conditions. Subject to market conditions, AEPB currently anticipates that it will pursue an initial public offering in the next 12 months.

To read more or comment...

Sterne Agee analysts look at CONSOL Energy's 3Q information

By Bob Downing Published: October 29, 2014

From New York-based Sterne Agee analysts Michael Dudas and Satyadeep Jain on Tuesday:

CONSOL ENERGY (NYSE: CNX) Flash Note
RATING: BUY

Price: $34.23
Price Target: $56.00

Strong Gas Volume and Cost Performance Amid a Very Active Quarter - Reaffirm Buy

Our Call
While managing lower spot coal and gas pricing during the quarter, Consol generated above targeted volume and lower operating costs in gas, de-risked coal margins and cash flow through contracting, and added value through liquids and Utica output. Management continues to make progress on non-core asset sales throughout its portfolio and its liquidity remains strong at $2.0 billion. Shares remain underpriced.

• 3Q'14 Results – Consol reported 3Q'14 adjusted earnings of $0.09/share vs. our $0.20 and Street's $0.19 estimate. Adjusted EBITDA of $236M fell short of our $258M and Street's $252M estimate. Average gas realization of $3.97/mcfe (thousand cubic feet equivalent) came in below our $4.53/mcfe estimate on basis differentials for Appalachian market sales points. However, total gas costs dropped to $3.12/mcfe, below our $3.58/mcfe estimate. Costs decreased primarily due to increase in Marcellus gas sales volumes. Gas margin of $0.85/mcfe came below our $0.95/mcfe estimate, and 2Q14 margins of $1.00/mcfe. Thermal coal pricing came in below expectations on roll-off of some legacy business and higher spot sales. Buchanan production costs dropped sequentially to almost $60/ton. We believe Buchanan has the lowest cost structure of all met mines in US.

• 2014 Guidance – Consol raised its 2014 gas production guidance to 235-240 Bcfe (up from 225-235 Bcfe) and maintained 2015-16 annual production growth targets of 30%. Management is targeting 4Q gas production of 70-75 billion cubic feet equivalent (Bcfe). During the past three months, we estimate Consol did not hedge any significant additional gas volumes for 2014-15. We estimate the company priced nearly 4.2 MT of additional thermal coal for 2015 during 3Q at prices below our expectations. Consol has priced 75% of its 2015E thermal coals; management expects to price 90% of 2015 thermal coals by 2014-end.

• Gas Business - 3Q Marcellus gas production increased 76% year-on-year (y/y) to 30.7 Bcfe. All in, Marcellus cash costs dropped to just $1.58/mcfe. 3Q Utica production volumes were 6.8 Bcfe vs 0.2 Bcfe in 3Q13. Consol remains long firm transportation and has structured its capacity contracts to allow for 30% growth targets through 2016. We expect natrual gas should average $4.00 per mcf through 2016 with volatility. While Consol's carry would likely be suspended beginning November, we would hope to see a resumption during Q1 2015.

• Balance Sheet and Liquidity – Consol ended 3Q14 with total liquidity of $2.0B. During 3Q, Consol executed $86M of non-core asset sales, including sale of portion of Illinois Basin coal reserves in Hamilton County. We believe Consol controls many liquidity levers to fund its gas growth that others in the basin do not profile. With our 2015 price deck, we would expect Consol to generate $1B in operating cash flow, which together with non-core asset sales and Joint Venture carry, should position Consol to meet capital targets.
 

To read more or comment...

Ohio has 1,141 drilled Utica wells, 607 producing Utica wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

Ohio has approved 1,567 Utica shale permits, as of Oct. 25.

That total includes 1,141 drilled Utica wells and 607 producing Utica wells, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Ohio has 44 drilling rigs at work.

Seven new permits were approved: one in Belmont County, two in Carroll County, three in Jefferson County and one in Tuscarawas County.

To read more or comment...

CONSOL Energy releases 3Q operations, financial updates

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

From CONSOL Energy today:

PITTSBURGH , Oct. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) had adjusted net income1 in the 2014 third quarter of $20 million , or $0.09 per share, after adjusting for unusual items, which are listed in the EBITDA reconciliation table on page 11. Adjusted EBITDA1 was $236 million for the 2014 third quarter, compared to $178 million in the year-earlier quarter. Cash flow from operations in the just-ended quarter was $293 million , as compared to $196 million in the year-earlier quarter. On a GAAP basis, the company reported a net loss of $2 million for the quarter, or ($0.01) per diluted share. This is compared to a net loss of $64 million , or ($0.28) per diluted share from the year-earlier quarter.

CONSOL's E&P Division had another outstanding quarter by achieving record production of 64.9 Bcfe, or an increase of 41% from the 46.1 Bcfe produced in the year-earlier quarter. Because well results are exceeding expectations, CONSOL Energy is raising its 2014 E&P production guidance range to 235 - 240 Bcfe from earlier guidance of 225 - 235 Bcfe. To achieve the high end of the new range, the company will need to produce approximately 75 Bcfe in the fourth quarter.

"Our record gas production in the third quarter represents sequential growth of 25%, which is the largest in company history," commented Nicholas J. DeIuliis , president and CEO. "Our focus continues to be on execution: production growth, lowering costs, and maximizing rates of return. These factors, along with recent transactions such as the IPO of CONE Midstream Partners LP , will continue to drive CONSOL Energy's net asset value (NAV) per share growth."

To read more or comment...

Fort Collins, Colo., appeals court decision killing fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

Fort Collins, Colo., is appealing a court decision that struck down uts fracking ban.

Click  here  to read more from the BakerHostetler law firm's shale blog.

To read more or comment...

Four Ohio communities to vote on community bills of rights

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

From the Pennsylvania-based Community Environmental Defense Fund today:

A record number of Community Bills of Rights citizens’ initiatives banning shale gas drilling and fracking are on the ballot in Ohio municipalities this November 4th.
 

The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) drafted each of the rights-based initiatives for Athens, Youngstown, Gates Mills, and Kent. Residents requested CELDF’s assistance to protect themselves from fracking and related activities, such as fracking wastewater injection wells, as both entered the state several years ago.
 

Since 2012, Ohio communities have been protecting themselves from fracking through CELDF-drafted Community Bills of Rights. Yellow Springs, Mansfield, Oberlin, and Broadview Heights adopted Community Bills of Rights in the last two years. These local laws codify community rights to self-governance and a healthy environment, and the rights of nature to exist and flourish – while prohibiting frack activities as a violation of those rights.

To read more or comment...

U.S. oil producers band together for crude export lobbying

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

The largest independent oil companies in the United States are banding together to lobby for the right to export crude around the world.

The new venture, dubbed “Producers for American Crude Oil Exports,” is the first formal lobbying effort solely designed to take down the 39-year-old ban on selling most U.S. oil overseas.

With more than a dozen independent oil companies on board, the venture is a sign that the industry is revving up for a big, coordinated push to dismantle those trade restrictions next year, when a new Congress is sworn in and the Obama administration may have more political freedom to tackle the issue.

Among the parties involved in Chesapeake Energy Corp., the No. 1 player in Ohio's Utica shale.

To read more or comment...

Sasol Ltd. to build $8.1 billion ethane cracker in Louisiana

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

A South African chemical maker announced plans to build an $8.1 billione ethane cracker plant in Lake Charles, La.

The announcement by Sasol Ltd., marks the chemical industry's biggest bet yet on America's shale drilling.

The plant would turn ethane into polyethylene for plastics.

It would have a yearly capacity of 1.5 million metric tons.

To read more or comment...

Antero Midstream seeking $788 million with initial stock offering

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

From Antero Resoruces on Monday:

DENVER , Oct. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Antero Resources Corporation (NYSE: AR) ("Antero") today announced the commencement of the Antero Midstream Partners LP (the "Partnership") initial public offering of 37,500,000 common units representing limited partner interests in the Partnership, at an anticipated initial public offering price between $19.00 and $21.00 per common unit, pursuant to a registration statement on Form S-1 previously filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the " SEC "). The Partnership expects to grant the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 5,625,000 common units. The Partnership has been approved to list its common units on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "AM," subject to official notice of issuance. The Partnership will initially own gathering and compression assets to service Antero's production.

The common units being offered represent an approximate 24.7% limited partner interest in the Partnership (or approximately 28.4% if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units). Antero and its affiliates will own the remaining approximately 75.3% limited partner interest in the Partnership (or approximately 71.6% if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units). Antero Midstream Management LLC , a wholly owned subsidiary of Antero's controlling stockholder, will serve as the general partner of the Partnership and will own the Partnership's incentive distribution rights.

Barclays and Citigroup will act as joint book-running managers and structuring agents for the offering. Wells Fargo Securities , Credit Suisse , J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley will also act as joint book-running managers.

To read more or comment...

Kenya may challenge Mozambique, Tanzania for offshore drilling

By Bob Downing Published: October 28, 2014

From GlobalData on Tuesday:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Kenya to Challenge Mozambique and Tanzania for Upstream Investment in East Africa, says GlobalData Analyst

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 28 October 2014 - Kenya will need to focus on providing a competitive and stable fiscal environment if it is to fully exploit its offshore gas industry and attract investors ahead of Mozambique and Tanzania, says an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

Gastar Exploration plans to drill on 232 acres under Ohio River

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

Gastar Exploration is the high bidder to drill under the Ohio River,

The company will pay West Virginia $812,000 plus 20 percent royalties to drill on 232 acres under the river in Wetzel and Marshall counties.

West Virginia owns the land under the river, not Ohio.

Final lease terms are being negotiated.

To read more or comment...

Drilling worker injured in Guernsey County explosion

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

A well worker in Guernsey County was injured late Friday in a well explosion.

The injured worker was airlifted to the burn unit at Akron Children's Hospital.

The well near Quaker City is being drilled by Pennsylvania-based Eclipse Resources.

The accident occurred about 11:41 p.m. Friday.

To read more or comment...

Nurse-midwife speaking on Wednesday in Youngstown

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

Nurse-midwife Katie Huffling will speak on "Public Health Impacts of Shale Gas Development: The Role of Nurses" on Wednesday, Oct. 29, in Youngstown,

Her talk will be at 7 p.m. in Moser Hall Room 2000 at Youngstown State University.

Huffling is director of programs for the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments.

As a nurse-midwife she is concerned with the impacts of environmental exposures on reproductive health. She has authored of a number of peer-reviewed articles on environmental health issues as they relate to pregnancy. She has created an assessment tool that can be used by nurses and other clinicians to assess for environmental exposures of pregnant women and prompts the clinician to provide anticipatory guidance. She is part of the development team for EnviRN.org. Her public outreach interests in integrating electronic media such as videos, podcasts, and smart phone applications into EnviRN.org to enhance the delivery of environmental health information and tools to nurses.

To read more or comment...

Ferus Natural gas Fuels opens LNG facility in Alberta

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

From Ferus Natural Gas Fuels:

Ferus Natural Gas Fuels Makes Canadian Energy History by Commissioning the First Merchant LNG Facility in Canada

Elmworth, Alberta (October 28, 2014) – Ferus Natural Gas Fuels Inc. (Ferus NGF) is pleased to announce the grand opening of the first merchant liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility in Canada - positioning the company as a leader in the North American domestic natural gas fueling market. The facility, which became commercially operational in May, 2014, is located in Elmworth, Alberta, about 65 kilometres southwest of Grand Prairie.

Ferus NGF’s Elmworth LNG plant is strategically located in the heart of oil and gas activity in northwest Alberta and northeast British Columbia, and produces high-quality LNG fuel for engines used in drilling rigs, pressure pumping services, water heating for well fracturing and heavy-duty highway and off-road trucks. Other high horsepower applications for this LNG are in rail, mining, and remote power generation. To support the entire LNG supply chain, Ferus NGF has also designed and built specialised mobile storage and dispensing equipment to provide full-service fueling solutions.

To read more or comment...

Carroll group to screen video on radiation at Nov. 6 meeting

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

Carroll Concerned Citizens will screen a video by Dr. Julie Weatherington-Rice on the links between shale gas and oil wastes and surface radioactivity on Nov. 6.

The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at the Church of Christ, 353 Moody Ave., Carrollton.

Free and open to the public.

For more information, conatct Paul Feezel at 330-813-8880 or paulfeezel@carrollconcernedcitizens.org.

To read more or comment...

Union unhappy with Markey, Warren action on gas pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

A press release from LiUNA today:

Washington, D.C. (Oct. 27, 2014) –U.S. Senators Edward Markey and Elizabeth Warren indicated to Massachusetts news media that they intend to pressure federal energy regulatory agencies in order to potentially block the Tennessee Gas Co.’s natural gas pipeline.

Terry O’Sullivan, General President of LIUNA – the Laborers’ International Union of North America – reacted with the following statement.

The Senators’ comments are a vulgar attempt to politicize our nation’s energy regulatory agencies. These agencies should be left alone to do their work based on facts and analysis, not pressure politics. Their comments are especially disconcerting when too many working people lack affordable fuels, our armed services are in harms-way due in part to our historical lack of energy independence, and at a time of growing concern over climate change – all of which the Tennessee Gas Co. line will do its part to help address.

To read more or comment...

Eclipse Resources adds 13 Utica wells in 3Q 2014

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

Pennsylvania-based Eclipse Resources has added 13 Utica shale wells in the third quarter 2014.

It also reports that its thi9rd-quarter production exceeded its guidance for the quarter.

Click   here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Carrizo to use $250 million in notes to purchase Eagle Ford land

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

From Carrizo Oil and Gas today

HOUSTON, Oct. 27, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc. (Nasdaq:CRZO) today announced that it has commenced a private offering to eligible purchasers, subject to market and other conditions, of $250 million aggregate principal amount of 7.50% senior notes due 2020. Carrizo intends to use the net proceeds from the proposed offering to fund the acquisition of oil and gas properties located in the Eagle Ford Shale from Eagle Ford Minerals, LLC, for $243.0 million, net of working capital adjustments and for general corporate purposes. $93.0 million was paid at closing which was funded from borrowings under the existing revolving credit facility which will be repaid with net proceeds from the offering. The remaining $150.0 million will be paid on a deferred basis no later than February 16, 2015 with borrowings under the existing revolving credit facility.

The notes to be offered have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), or any state securities laws and, unless so registered, may not be offered or sold in the United States except pursuant to an exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act and applicable state securities laws. The senior unsecured notes will be offered only to qualified institutional buyers under Rule 144A under the Securities Act and non-U.S. persons under Regulation S under the Securities Act.

This news release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy the notes nor shall there be any sale of the notes in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.

To read more or comment...

Williams Partners, Access Midstream enter merger agreement

By Bob Downing Published: October 27, 2014

Williams, Williams Partners L.P. and Access Midstream Partners, L.P. on Sunday announced that Williams Partners and Access Midstream Partners have entered into a merger agreement.

Williams owns controlling interests in the two master limited partnerships.

Click  here  to see the full statement.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake Energy unit cancels planned $862 million IPO

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

A Chesapeake Energy Corp. unit has cancelled a planned initial public stock offering valued at $862 million.

The announcement from the conmpany's oilfield services company came Friday in a government filing.

No explanation was offered for the cancellation. The IPO had been announced last April.

Click  here  to read more.

To read more or comment...

Illinois legislative committee delays action on fracking rules

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

Uncertainty is building in Illinois, after a legislative committee delayed acting on proposed rules for hydraulic fracturing or fracking in the state.

Click  here  to read the latest assessment from the BakerHostetler law firm's shale blog.

To read more or comment...

Kinder Morgan merger transactions to get Nov. 20 votes

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

Votes will be held on Nov. 20 on Kinder Morgan merger transactions.

The needed paperwork has been filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The proposed mergers were announced on Aug. 10.

Click  here  to read the company's statement.

To read more or comment...

Ohio bank deposits booming in Utica shale counties

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

Citing federal bank data, Columbus Business First reports that banks in eastern Ohio counties where Utica shale drilling is underway are seeing more deposits from customers.]

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

West Virginia chemical maker is in legal fight, fears fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

A major West Virginia chemical maker is waging a legal battle to keep a drilling company from fracking wells at its plant in Marshall County, reports the Charleton Gazette.

Atlanta-based Axiall Corp. is fighting with Gaster Exoloration and fears a maor incident like what happened last spring.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Shell Midstream launches initial public stock offerings

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

Shell Midstream Partners LP, Royal Dutch Shell's master-limited partnership, has launched its initial public offering and increased its proposed maximum aggregate offering price, according to the Houston Business Journal.

The Houston-based MLP filed for an IPO of up to $750 million in June and bumped that up to $905.6 million in an Oct. 20 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Shell Midstream Partners was formed to own, operate, develop and acquire pipelines and other midstream assets. Its initial assets are expected to consist of ownership interests in four onshore and offshore pipelines located primarily in Texas and Louisiana.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Conservancy celebrates Va.'s Warm Springs Mountain Preserve

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

From Dominion on Thursday:

WARM SPRINGS, Va., Oct. 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Through the generous contributions of a number of private donors, The Nature Conservancy has secured the protection of its Warm Springs Mountain Preserve, which connects thousands of acres of conservation lands throughout western Virginia. In a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Dan Ingalls Overlook today, the Conservancy acknowledged the individuals and corporations that helped the organization realize one of its largest land purchases in Virginia.

"We are grateful to everyone who has helped us protect Warm Springs Mountain Preserve, acknowledging that they understand what a special place this is," said Michael Lipford, Virginia executive director for The Nature Conservancy. "In addition to conserving critical habitat in the heart of the Allegheny Highlands for perpetuity, we're ensuring that generations to come will be able to connect with and share our passion for nature."

The Conservancy purchased the 9,000-acre preserve in 2002 and has since been raising the necessary $6.7 million funds through individuals, foundations and corporations until paying it off completely this year. A number of private donors helped pay off the debt, including Dominion Resources and the Beirne Carter Foundation. Today's ceremony included the unveiling of a new trailhead at the overlook. Dominion provided a grant to cover the costs of the new kiosk, trail surface, landscaping and stonework, and recruited volunteers to help build the new trailhead. The County of Bath Office of Tourism co-hosted the ribbon cutting with the Dominion Foundation and The Nature Conservancy.

To read more or comment...

Marcellus Shale Coalition releases year-in-review video

By Bob Downing Published: October 24, 2014

The Pennsylvania-based Marcellus Shale Coalition, a pro-drilling industry group, has released a new year-in-review video.

It is called Shale: Unifying America.

Click  here  to view the video.

To read more or comment...

Oct. 28 meeting in Columbiana County on landfill expansion

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

From the Communities United for Responsible Energy on plans for a new Columbiana County landfill to largely take drilling wastes:

 

 

Who: Communities United for Responsible Energy

To read more or comment...

EnLink Midstream Partners acquiring equity interests

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

From EnLink Midstream Partners on Wednesday:

DALLAS,October 22, 2014 — EnLink Midstream Partners, LP (NYSE: ENLK) (“ENLK” or the “Partnership”) today announced that it has acquired equity interests in E2 Appalachian Compression, LLC and E2 Energy Services, LLC (together “E2”) from EnLink Midstream, LLC (NYSE: ENLC) (“ENLC” or the “General Partner”). The total consideration for the transaction is approximately $193 million, including a cash payment of $163 million and approximately 1.0 million ENLK units. ENLC expects to use the majority of the cash it received in the transaction to repay indebtedness. This transaction marks the first drop down from ENLC to ENLK as part of the Partnership’s strategic growth plan.

 

EnLink Midstream’s strategy in the Utica and Marcellus shale plays is primarily focused on stabilizing and transporting condensate via pipeline, rail, barge and trucking operations. The addition of the E2 assets further builds upon the Partnership’s existing platform in the region, where EnLink Midstream expects to have invested approximately $700 million by the end of 2015, including the drop down of E2. The E2 assets are supported by a long-term, fee-based contract, including minimum volume commitments, with Antero Resources (NYSE: AR), one of the most active drillers in the Utica and Marcellus region. Once all the E2 stabilization and compression facilities are complete in the first half of 2015, they are expected to generate approximately $20-25 million per year of adjusted EBITDA. Adjusted EBITDA is explained in greater detail under “Non-GAAP Financial Information.”

To read more or comment...

EQT Energy reports gas, oil production jumps in 3Q 2014

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

Pittsburgh-based EQT Energy today reported that production increased in the third quarter 2014.

The company is drilling 91 wells in the Marcellus, Upper Devonian and Huron shales in Pennsylvania.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

37 eco-groups ask governor to ban fracking in Florida

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

A press release from three groups received on Wednesday:

State and National Groups Demand Gov. Scott Issue a Ban on Drilling, Fracking and Acidizing in Florida

Citizens draw line against new oil drilling in Greater Everglades after unauthorized fracking threatens water supplies and triggers county and state lawsuits

 

To read more or comment...

OOGEEP recognized for public education, outreach programs

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

OOGEEP Recognized for Exemplary Public Education and Outreach Efforts

National association of oil and gas regulators awards OOGEEP

 

COLUMBUS, OH – The Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) was recently awarded the Chairman’s Stewardship Award for Energy Education from the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC) at the association’s annual meeting in Columbus.

To read more or comment...

5.4 million Californians live within 1 mile of gas, oil wells, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 23, 2014

From the Natural Resources Defense Council on Wednesday:

 

FRACKING REPORT: 5.4 Million Californians Now Live Within a Mile of Oil or Gas Wells, Majority are People of Color

One-Third Already Live in Pollution Hot Spots Where More Than 90 Percent of Residents Are Non-White

To read more or comment...

Some drilling companies using petroleum-based fracking products

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

From the Environmental Integrity Project today:

WASHINGTON, D.C. - October 22, 2014 - Despite a federal ban on the use of diesel fuel in hydraulic fracturing without a permit, several oil and gas companies are exploiting a Safe Drinking Water Act loophole pushed through by Halliburton to frack with petroleum-based products containing even more dangerous toxic chemicals than diesel.

For example, a drilling company in West Texas injected up to 48,000 gallons of benzene (a carcinogen) into the ground just last month.

The report by the Environmental Integrity Project, "Fracking's Toxic Loophole," describes how a gap in the Safe Drinking Water Act - nicknamed the "Halliburton Loophole" - requires permits for fracking with diesel fuel, but allows companies to inject other petroleum products even more toxic than diesel without any permitting requirements or safeguards for underground water supplies.

"This double standard illustrates what happens when Congress manipulates environmental statutes for the benefit of polluters, instead of allowing EPA to make public health decisions based on the best available science," said Eric Schaeffer Executive Director of the Environmental Integrity Project and former Director of Civil Enforcement at EPA.

Fracking with fluids containing benzene (a carcinogen), ethylbenzene (a probable carcinogen), and other highly toxic chemicals is a potential threat to drinking water supplies and public health, but it appears to be common, according to the Environmental Integrity Project's review of product descriptions available online and company disclosures to an industry-sponsored database of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, called "FracFocus."

At least six fracking fluid additives on the market today contain more benzene (a carcinogen) than diesel fuel. And at least 21 fluids sold by Halliburton and other companies contain much higher concentrations of ethylbenzene (a probable carcinogen) than benzene, according to industry product descriptions available online. These fracking fluid additives also contained very high levels of xylene and toluene, which can cause neurological problems and other health effects.

"To protect public health, Congress should repeal the Halliburton Loophole and EPA should broaden the categories of fracking fluids that require Safe Drinking Water Act permits," said Schaeffer. "Without these reforms, we are perpetuating a loophole that allows the unregulated injection of unlimited quantities of highly toxic pollutants into the ground."

Exactly how often oil and gas companies use these toxic petroleum products is not clear, in part
because not all firms disclose to FracFocus. But even the limited data available on FracFocus shows at least 153 wells in 11 states were fracked with fluids containing ethylbenzene between January 2011 and September 2014, with the largest numbers of wells in Oklahoma (77 wells), North Dakota (23), Texas (20), Wyoming (11), Colorado (9), California (5), Ohio (3), Louisiana (2), New Mexico (1), Montana (1), and Michigan (1).

In some cases, the amount of toxic fracking fluids injected into the ground is large. For example, in September, a Texas-based oil and gas company called BlackBrush O&G, LLC, reported injecting a mix of crude oil, butane, and other fluids containing up to 48,000 gallons of benzene into a well in Dimmit County, Texas. Between May 2013 and February 2014, another firm, Discovery Operating Services, reported injecting solvents containing nearly 1,000 gallons of benzene into eleven wells in Midland and Upland Counties in Texas.

Sharon Wilson, Texas organizer for Earthworks' Oil & Gas Accountability Project, said: "Texas is in a record-breaking drought where private water wells and even wells for entire towns are going dry. Every drop is precious so we cannot risk polluting any water with toxic fracking chemicals."

On August 13, EIP released a report, "Fracking Beyond the Law," that documented the problem of illegal fracking with diesel fuel. The report identified 351 wells fracked with diesel without required Safe Drinking Water Act Permits between 2010 and July 2014. In a letter sent to EPA on October 6, EIP identified an additional 243 wells fracked with diesel. The problem of fracking with diesel was also highlighted in reports by Congressional Democrats in 2011 and the United States Government Accountability Office in June 2014.

The Environmental Integrity Project is a 12-year-old nonprofit organization that works to protect public health by advocating for the enforcement of environmental laws.

*****

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania bill would increase reporting requirements for drillers

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

The Pennsylvania Legislature has approved a bill to change drilling reporting requirements.

At present, drillers in Pennsylvania must report production totals twice a year.

Under House Bill 2278, they would have to report production totals monthly.

The bill has been sent to Gov. Corbett for his signature.

To read more or comment...

Caiman Energy's Arcata honored as top energy CFO

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

A press release from Caiman Energy on Tuesday:

DALLAS, TX – Caiman Energy II, LLC (“Caiman II”) is pleased to announce that Stephen Arata, has been named Dallas Energy CFO of the Year by an independent panel of judges selected by the Dallas Business Journal. Arata serves as executive vice president, chief financial officer (CFO) and a director of Caiman II. He is also executive vice president, CFO and a director at Blue Racer Midstream (“Blue Racer”), a joint venture formed by Caiman Energy II and Dominion (NYSE: D) to develop midstream infrastructure and services in the Utica Shale.

Arata joined Caiman Energy I in 2010 and was instrumental in the financing and growth of the company’s multibillion dollar midstream footprint in the Marcellus Shale. In 2012, he played a key role in the $2.5 billion sale of Caiman I’s subsidiary, Caiman Eastern Midstream, LLC, to Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ). He went on to help lead the capitalization of Caiman II and the subsequent formation of Blue Racer. In 2013 Arata led efforts to secure Blue Racer’s $800 million credit facility. Nineteen banks participated in the credit arrangement, which has since been expanded to $1 billion.

“Stephen has enjoyed a distinguished career in both the financial and energy sectors,” said Jack Lafield, Caiman’s chairman and CEO. “He has displayed exemplary leadership, as well as a remarkable ability to finance and grow the company through significant periods in our history. Stephen also makes very meaningful contributions of his time and extraordinary talent across the Dallas community. We are fortunate and honored to have him as a part of our leadership team.”

To read more or comment...

Norway's high taxes hinder Arctic oil opportunities, analyst says

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

From GlobalData today:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 22 October 2014 - States and International Oil Companies (IOCs) are banking on the Arctic as a major source of future oil and gas production, but the high costs and risks involved with operations in the area mean that an attractive fiscal regime is essential if developments are to be commercially viable, says an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

Fracking boosts Texas school endowment to $37.7 billion

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

A fund that collects rents and royalties from oil and natural gas development to Texas public schools recently became the largest education endowment in the country.

The publicly run endowment, called the Permanent School Fund, is worth $37.7 billion dollars. That’s $1.3 billion more than Harvard University’s $36.4 billion endowment, according to NPR's StateImpact Pennsylvania.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Legal update on decisions linked to Ohio's Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

As shale drilling has grown in Ohio, so, too, has the number of legal cases linked to Utica shale in the state and federal courts.

The law firm BakerHostetler on its blog offers a legal update on Ohio-linked drilling cases recently decided by the courts.

Click  here  to read more.

To read more or comment...

What impact will sliding oil prices have on U.S. shale drilling?

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

The question of the week: What impact will slipping oil prices have on U.S. shale drilling?

Oil prices have plunged from $115 a barrel in June to $86 a barrel last week, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

It is unclear what impact that will have on growing shale drilling.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Chevron Corp. donates $20 million to Appalachian Partnership

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

From the Associated Press:

Chevron Corp. is spending $20 million to launch its Appalachia Partnership Initiative, which is meant to improve schools and workforce development in 27 counties in southwestern Pennsylvania, northern West Virginia and eastern Ohio.

Chevron is working with the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation and RAND Corporation to improve Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and other measures to produce skilled workers for the energy and manufacturing industries spurred by Marcellus Shale drilling.

Among other measures, Chevron will work with the ShaleNET workforce training program to provide scholarships at four community colleges in those counties.

To read more or comment...

Middle-class Americans own oil, natural gas firms, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday:

WASHINGTON, October 21, 2014 – The owners of America's oil and natural gas companies are largely retirees and middle class Americans saving for retirement, according to a report by Sonecon, Who Owns America’s Oil and Natural Gas Companies, commissioned by API.

“When oil and natural gas companies do well, so do millions of their owners all across America,” said Kyle Isakower, API vice president of regulatory and economic policy. “The study concludes that a large proportion of the benefits of oil and gas company stock ownership goes to middle class Americans.”

In 2014, public and private pension and retirement plans, including 401(k)s and IRAs, hold 46.8 percent of all the shares of U.S. oil and natural gas companies, according to the study. Individual investors own 18.7 percent, and asset management companies including mutual funds hold 24.7 percent of shares. Institutional investors like banks, insurance companies, foundations and endowments hold 6.9 percent of shares.

Together, these groups hold 97 percent of oil and gas industry stock. By comparison, the officers and board members of U.S. oil and gas companies own less than 3 percent of total shares.

“As companies announce 3rd quarter earnings, it’s important to remember how they’re in line with other manufacturers, how they’re large as a total dollar figure because these are large multinational companies that compete on a global stage with foreign nationally-owned oil and natural gas companies, and how these earnings represent good news for millions of Americans,” Isakower said. “The U.S. oil and natural gas industry is a major part of our nation's economy. It supports 9.8 million jobs and pays more taxes than any other industry and at higher effective rates. As the Sonecon study shows, the industry also benefits millions of Americans who are its true owners.”
 

To read more or comment...

Magnum Hunter Resources reports on W. Va. Utica, Marcellus wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 22, 2014

From Texas-based Magnum Hunter Resources today:

HOUSTON, TX--(Marketwired - Oct 22, 2014) - Magnum Hunter Resources Corporation ( NYSE : MHR ) ( NYSE MKT : MHR.PRC ) ( NYSE MKT : MHR.PRD ) ( NYSE MKT : MHR.PRE ) (the "Company" or "Magnum Hunter") announced today that the Company has completed test results on its 100% owned Stewart Winland Pad located in Tyler County, West Virginia. The Stewart Winland Pad has four 100% owned recently completed wells (3 Marcellus and 1 Utica).

The Stewart Winland 1301M was drilled and cased to a true vertical depth of 6,155 feet with a 5,762 foot horizontal lateral, and successfully fraced with 27 stages. The well tested at a peak rate of 17.0 MMCFE of natural gas per day (~23% Condensate and ~25% NGL) on an adjustable choke.

The Stewart Winland 1302M was drilled and cased to a true vertical depth of 6,147 feet with a 5,676 foot horizontal lateral, and successfully fraced with 29 stages. The well tested at a peak rate of 17.1 MMCFE of natural gas per day (~19% Condensate and ~26% NGL) on an adjustable choke.

To read more or comment...

EPA Inspector General to proceed with fracking investigation

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the U.S. EPA's Inspector General:

 

EPA Inspector General Responds to Sen. Inhofe’s Letter about Office of Inspector General’s Review of Hydraulic Fracturing

WASHINGTON

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania DEP misrepresented fracking threat, eco-group says

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the Sierra Club on Monday:

Court documents show PA environmental agency misrepresented potential pollution from fracking

 

Documents filed today with the Washington County, PA Common Pleas Court show that state agencies are knowing using incomplete studies to permit fracking and drilling for natural gas that do not come close to addressing potential threats to human and environmental health. The depositions of two employees of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Agency state that the studies omit measurements of key air toxics and calculate the health risks of just two of more than two dozen pollutants. State regulators and the shale gas drilling industry over the past four years have repeatedly used the regional studies to support their positions that air emissions from drilling, fracking wastewater impoundments, and compressor stations pose no public health risk.

To read more or comment...

NRDC: Energy efficiency is key to booming energy sector

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the Natural Resources Defense Council today:

 

WASHINGTON (October 16, 2014) – The United States is reducing oil dependence, slowing the growth of electricity needs, and making energy services more affordable to all Americans--and our smarter use of energy is the single most important contributor to these positive trends, according to a report released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

“Despite what you may be hearing from a final onslaught of negative campaign ads, the security and affordability of America’s energy services has never been better, and energy efficiency is the most important reason why,” said Ralph Cavanagh, co-director of the NRDC energy program. “The latest data confirms that our consumption of energy, including oil and coal, remains well below its peak levels from a decade ago. However, we can and should do more.”

To read more or comment...

Activists push New York Gov. Cuomo to halt Bakken oil trains

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

A pree release from Earthjustice received today:

Broad Coalition of Groups Call On Governor Cuomo To Stop Exploding Oil Trains

Seek State Order Prohibiting Bomb Trains

 

To read more or comment...

Carroll County air pollution higher than Chicago, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the Associated Press today:

By MARK GILLISPIE

A study in a rural Ohio county where oil and gas drilling is booming found air pollution levels near well sites higher than those in downtown Chicago.

A team from the University of Cincinnati and Oregon State University placed 25 monitors as close as one-tenth of a mile from gas wells in Carroll County, about 100 miles south of Cleveland. The monitoring occurred over a three-week period in February.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania fines company $306,570 for pipeline violations

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection today:

WILLIAMSPORT -- The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced it has fined Regency Marcellus Gas Gathering LLC of San Antonio, Texas, $306,570 for multiple violations of the Clean Streams Law, Dam Safety and Encroachment Act and state regulations during the construction of two natural gas pipelines in 2012 and 2013.

The pipeline construction was performed by PVR Marcellus Gas Gathering LLC of Williamsport, Lycoming County, which was later acquired by Regency.

“Many of these violations occurred over a significant period of time,” DEP Director of District Oil and Gas Operations John Ryder said. “We expect that Regency has made operational changes to avoid problems of this nature during future pipeline construction projects.”

To read more or comment...

Consumer energy costs drop to 5 percent off disposable income

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administartion today:

 

Total U.S. household energy consumption expenditures have generally declined relative to disposable income since 1959, although during periods of high energy prices, consumers devote increasing shares of their income to energy. Energy expenditures ranged between 4% and 8% of disposable income since 1959. Consumer energy expenditures today are a lower percentage of disposable income than the average from 1960 to present (5.5%).

To read more or comment...

GAO report says crude exports would boost U.S. economy

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Monday:

WASHINGTON, October 20, 2014 ─ This morning’s report from federal auditors at the Government Accountability Office (GAO) confirms the findings of numerous studies showing that removing export barriers for U.S. crude oil could incentivize higher domestic production, create more jobs, lower the trade deficit, and put downward pressure on gasoline prices.

“The U.S. is now an energy superpower, but our trade policies remain stuck in the 1970s,” said API Chief Economist John Felmy. “The GAO report simply confirms what economists like Daniel Yergin and Larry Summers have been saying for months, which is that American consumers and workers will be among the first to benefit if we lift restrictions on crude exports.

“America is the world’s largest producer of natural gas and projected leader in oil, thanks to innovations in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. Allowing free trade in energy will mean more jobs, downward pressure on fuel costs, and can further reduce the impact of global unrest on oil markets. U.S. energy production is already having a major impact on world markets, and if policymakers embrace free trade, that influence will continue to grow in a way that benefits our economy.”
 

To read more or comment...

Ohio has 1,122 drilled Utica wells, 607 producing Utica wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

Ohio has approved 1,560 Utica shale permits, as of Oct. 18.

Of that total, 1,122 Utica wells have been drilled in Ohio and 607 Utica wells are in production, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources says.

Ohio has 46 rigs at work.

Twelve new permits were approved: one in Belmont County, six in Harrison County and five in Monroe County.

To read more or comment...

Total SA CEO killed in jet-snowplow accident near Moscow

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

The CEO of French Total SA was killed in an accident in Russia when his private jet collided with a snow plow whose driver was drunk.

Total SA is a player in Ohio's Utica shale, partnering with Chesapeake Energy and EV Energy Partners.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

EV Energy Partners closes on sale of Cardinal Gas Service interest

By Bob Downing Published: October 21, 2014

From EV Energy Partners on Monday:

HOUSTON , Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- EV Energy Partners, L.P. (NASDAQ: EVEP) today announced it has closed the previously announced sale of its nine percent interest in Cardinal Gas Services, L.L.C. , (CGS) to a fund managed by Samchully Asset Management Co. Ltd. , and E1, for $162 million , which included certain purchase price adjustments. This sale was made in conjunction with TOTAL E&P USA , INC., which also sold its 25 percent interest in CGS for approximately $450 million . The transaction is subject to customary post-closing purchase price adjustments. EVEP intends to use the net proceeds of the disposition to repay amounts outstanding under its revolving credit facility. Availability under the revolving credit facility may be used to fund future activities, including acquisitions of oil and natural gas properties. BofA Merrill Lynch acted as financial advisor on the transactions.

EV Energy Partners, L.P. is a master limited partnership engaged in acquiring, producing and developing oil and natural gas properties. More information about EVEP is available on the Internet at http://www.evenergypartners.com.

To read more or comment...

Texas voters to Denton to vote on municipal fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

It's a Nov. 4 election vote that is getting lots of attention in Texas and beyond.

The city of Denton, Texas, is voting on a municipal ban of hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

Such a vote in the college town near Dallas is unheard of in Texas.

Oil and gas company executives have expressed uneasiness that the Denton vote threatens to encourage anti-fracking forces nationwide.

To read more or comment...

Kansas task force unable to connect injection wells, earthquakes

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

A state of Kansas task force reports that it was unable to prove a connection between earthquakes and injection wells and called for further analysis of the connection, the Topeka Capitol Journal reported on Oct. 1.

Earthquakes were more numerous in Kansas in 2014 than in previous years.

Click  here  to read the full story.

.

To read more or comment...

Shell kicks off second open season for Westward Ho Pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

From Shell last week:

Shell Pipeline Begins Second Open Season For The Westward Ho Pipeline Project.

Shell Pipeline Company LP today announced the start of its Second Open Season for additional capacity commitments on the St. James to Nederland pipeline project (“Westward Ho Pipeline”). The Second Open Season continues until November 24th, 2014 at 5:00pm CST.

Shell Pipeline’s Westward Ho Pipeline would enhance access to the anticipated increase in domestic production of U.S. Gulf of Mexico and foreign crude that will be available at St. James, LA. Additionally, the Westward Ho Pipeline project will complement the new storage and logistics infrastructure that is currently being built in the St. James and Clovelly, LA areas.

To read more or comment...

North Dakota working to reduce natural gas flaring

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

About one-third of the natural gas North Dakota has produced in recent years has been flared rather than sold to customers or consumed on-site. The rapid growth in North Dakota oil production, which rose from more than 230,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) in January 2010 to more than 1,130,000 bbl/d in August 2014, has led to increased volumes of associated gas, or natural gas that comes from oil reservoirs. These increased volumes require additional infrastructure to gather, process, and transport gas volumes instead of flaring them. These additions can take time to build, and well operators are often reluctant to delay production. In an effort to reduce the amount of natural gas flared, North Dakota's Industrial Commission (NDIC) established targets that decrease the amount of flared gas over the next several years.

To read more or comment...

U.S. petroleum demand drops in September, 3Q, API reports

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute:

WASHINGTON, October 17, 2014 ─ Total U.S. petroleum deliveries (a measure of demand) decreased by 3.5 percent from September 2013 to average 18.6 million barrels per day last month. For the third quarter, petroleum demand fell by 0.9 percent from the same period last year.

“The gap between U.S. petroleum production and demand continued to trend higher last month,” said API Chief Economist John Felmy. “Strong production of crude and petroleum products coupled with soft demand is a classic recipe for the market movements that have generated headlines in recent weeks.”

Gasoline demand fell 3.0 percent from September 2013 to average nearly 8.7 million barrels per day, and distillate deliveries decreased by 2.6 percent to approximately 3.6 million barrels per day. Over the same period, jet fuel demand dropped 2.9 percent to the lowest level for the month in 21 years while residual fuel set a new September low with a 44.6 percent decline. “Other Oils,” which accounted for 25.4 percent of total deliveries, showed an increase of 1.0 percent over year-ago levels.

Domestic crude oil production reached the highest September level in 29 years, increasing by 13.7 percent from last year to 8.8 million barrels per day. Natural gas liquids (NGL) production, a co-product of natural gas production reached a new all-time high of 3.1 million barrels per day, rising 11.1 percent over the same period. According to the latest reports from Baker-Hughes, Inc., the number of oil and gas rigs in the U.S. in September was 1,930, up from August’s count of 1,904 and from September 2013’s count of 1,760. This was the highest count since July 2012.

U.S. total petroleum imports fell to their lowest level since February 1995, averaging just below 8.4 million barrels per day. This was a 16.3 drop from the prior year. Crude oil imports averaged 7.4 million barrels per day, down 6.7 percent over the same period to the lowest September level in 18 years. Meanwhile, imports of refined petroleum products dropped 52.5 percent to average 1.0 million barrels per day, the lowest level for EIA records dating to 1981.

Refinery gross inputs gained 1.2 percent from last year to set a new September record just above 16.3 million barrels per day. Gasoline production was at the lowest level since February but was 2.7 percent higher than the prior year to set a new record for the month of September at 9.4 million barrels per day. Exports of refined petroleum products increased by 18.4 percent from last year to nearly 4.3 million barrels per day. This was the highest September level on record and was also the third highest exports level ever recorded.

The refinery capacity utilization rate averaged 91.7 percent in September, down 1.2 percentage points from August but up 1.0 percentage points from the same period last year. API’s latest refinery operable capacity was 17.822 million barrels per day.

Crude oil stocks ended September at 359.0 million barrels, down 3.8 percent from last year. Stocks of motor gasoline ended down by 4.3 percent from last year to 210.3 million barrels. Distillate and jet fuel stocks were both down from year-ago levels while stocks of “other oils” were up over the same period.
 

To read more or comment...

Natural gas well completions grew 3 percent in 3Q, API says

By Bob Downing Published: October 20, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute late last week:

WASHINGTON, October 16, 2014 – Estimated U.S. natural gas well completions increased by 3 percent in the third quarter of 2014 compared to year-ago levels, according to API's 2014 Quarterly Well Completion Report, Third Quarter.

“America’s oil and natural gas industry increased natural gas drilling in the third quarter thanks in large part to access on private and state lands,” said Hazem Arafa, director of API's statistics department. “Additional access to our own vast energy resources and streamlined federal permitting would allow for more opportunities to produce U.S. energy while creating more American jobs and generating more revenue for our government."

Total oil well drilling increased 1 percent in the total year-to-date figures for 2014, according to the report, and exploratory oil wells increased 12 percent for the 3rd quarter. Total gas drilling decreased over the same time frame, resulting in the total well completions for year-to-date 2014 remaining steady.
 

To read more or comment...

Drop in oil prices due to shale boom helping American consumers

By Bob Downing Published: October 18, 2014

The recent drop in oil prices is producing a $500 savings for each American household, as the price oi oil has dropped 50 cents a gallon at the pump since last April's highest pump prices.

The reason: shale drilling.

Click  here  to read the full story from Bloomberg News.

To read more or comment...

New pipeline to move Utica, Marcellus natural gas to Chicago area

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

Texas-based Kinder Morgan's Natural Gas Pipeline Co. of America LLC has kicked off an open season to sign up customer for a new $100 million natural gas pipeline to serve the Chicago area with gas from the Utica and Marcellus shales.

The pipeline would run northward from an interconnection with the existing Rockies Express Pipeline in Moultrie County, Ill.

The new line could be service by November 2016.

Click  here  to read the company's statement.

To read more or comment...

Antero Resources' borrowing base grows to $4 billion

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

From Antero Resources on Thursday:

DENVER, Oct. 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Antero Resources Corporation (NYSE: AR) ("Antero" or the "Company") announced today that the borrowing base under its bank credit facility has been increased to $4.0 billion.  This represents a $1.0 billion increase over Antero's previous borrowing base announced in May 2014.  In addition, lender commitments under the facility were increased by $500 million to $3.0 billion.  The $3.0 billion commitment can be expanded to the full $4.0 billion borrowing base upon bank approval.

The bank syndicate, which is co-led by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., was expanded to add five banks increasing the number of participants to 26 banks.  As of June 30, 2014, and adjusted for this borrowing base and lender commitment increase, Antero had $1.2 billion drawn under the credit facility and $237 million in letters of credit outstanding, resulting in $1.5 billion of available liquidity and over $2.5 billion of unused borrowing base capacity.  The next redetermination of the borrowing base is scheduled to occur in the second quarter of 2015.

To read more or comment...

Drilling communities need to plan for when drilling ends

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland research analyst Matthew Klusta looks at how communities affected by shale drilling should begin planning for what happens after the drilling ends in the latest issue of Forefront magazine.

Click  here  to read the story.

To read more or comment...

Mountaineer Keystone adds 131,000 Marcellus acres in W. Va.

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

From Pittsburgh-based Mountaineer Keystone, a company drilling in Ohio's Utica shale:

Mountaineer Keystone Holdings, LLC Announces Completion of PDC Mountaineer, LLC Acquisition a 50/50 Joint Venture between PDC Energy, Inc. and Lime Rock Partners, LLC.

Aggregate purchase price of $500 million.

Pittsburgh, PA, October 14, 2014 – Mountaineer Keystone Energy, LLC (“Mountaineer Keystone” or the "Company"), a portfolio company of First Reserve, the largest private equity firm exclusively focused on energy, today announced that it has completed the acquisition of the equity interests in PDC Mountaineer LLC ("PDCM"), a Marcellus Joint Venture ("JV") between PDC Energy, Inc. and Lime Rock Partners LLC, with an effective date of January 1, 2014, for an aggregate purchase price of $500 million.

To read more or comment...

Statoil president, CEO departs to join another oil-gas company

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

From Norway-based Statoil, a player in Ohio's Utica shale, earlier this week:

Helge Lund has chosen to leave Statoil to take up the position as CEO of another international oil and gas company.

The board of directors has appointed Eldar Sætre as acting president and CEO of Statoil with immediate effect.

To read more or comment...

Minimal energy development likely in greater sage-grouse areas

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

From the Western Values Project on Thursday:

NEW REPORT: Minimal Energy Development Potential in Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat

 

Balanced Approach to Sagebrush Habitat Conservation Would Allow For Robust Energy Development

To read more or comment...

Longmont residents claim win after Colorado lawsuit dropped

By Bob Downing Published: October 17, 2014

From the Sierra Club on Wednesday:

 

 

LONGMONT, CO- Today the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) and the Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA) dropped their lawsuit to invalidate a Longmont City Ordinance that protects residents from the pollution and associated health threats of oil and gas development. The State dismissed the suit after more than two years of litigation, as a part of a deal brokered in August 2014 to keep two anti-fracking initiatives off the November ballot.

To read more or comment...

Two Saudi crude projects top world's recoverable reserves

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From GlobalData on Thursday:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Saudi Assets Lead World’s Upstream Developments for Recoverable Oil Reserves, says GlobalData

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 16 October 2014 - The Khurais and Manifa projects in Saudi Arabia have the most recoverable reserves among the world’s top 100 upstream developments, with approximately 19.4 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) and 13.7 billion boe, respectively, according to research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

New York high court upholds community fracking bans

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From Earthjustice today:

ALBANY, NY – Today the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, rejected an attempt by the oil and gas industry to revive a case on local fracking bans that the court decided earlier this year.

In the precedent-setting decision, the Court ruled that the towns can use local zoning laws to ban heavy industry, including oil and gas operations, within municipal borders.

 

To read more or comment...

Gulfport Energy reports on third quarter 2014 production

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From Gulfport Energy on Wednesday:

 

OKLAHOMA CITY , Oct. 15, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Gulfport Energy Corporation (Nasdaq:GPOR) ("Gulfport") today announced third quarter 2014 production, provided a financial hedging update and scheduled its third quarter 2014 financial and operational results conference call.

To read more or comment...

Antero Resources releases third quarter 2014 updates

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From Antero Resources earlier this week:

Denver, Colorado, October 14, 2014—Antero Resources (NYSE: AR) (“Antero” or the “Company”) announced third quarter 2014 operational highlights today.

Operating Update

To read more or comment...

EV Energy Partners close on $30.6 million Eagle Ford sale

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From EV Energy Partners on Wednesday:

HOUSTON , Oct. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- EV Energy Partners, L.P. (NASDAQ: EVEP) announced that it, along with certain institutional partnerships managed by EnerVest, Ltd. , has closed the previously announced sale of certain deep rights in the Eagle Ford formation in Burleson , Brazos and Grimes Counties, Texas , to an undisclosed buyer. Net proceeds to EVEP are $30.6 million .

EVEP and EnerVest institutional partnerships will retain all non-Eagle Ford formation rights, including the Austin Chalk formation and corresponding production. The transaction is subject to customary post-closing purchase price adjustments.

EV Energy Partners, L.P. is a master limited partnership engaged in acquiring, producing and developing oil and natural gas properties. More information about EVEP is available on the Internet at http://www.evenergypartners.com.

To read more or comment...

Statement, map from Texas-based Southwestern Energy Co.

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

Click  here  to read the Southwestern Energy statement on the sale of Utica, Marcellus assets from Chesapeake Energy in northern West Virginia and a small area of western Pennsylvania. That includes a map of the sale area.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake sale covers 19 West Virginia, Pennsylvania counties

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is selling off 413,000 acres and 435 wells in the Utica and Marcellus shales in northern West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania for $5.38 billion.

The buyer is Houston-based Southwestern Energy Co.

The sale, announced on Thursday, includes 256 horizontal wells in the two states that are in production plus another 179 horizontal wells that are non-operating or non-producing.

The sale area covers 18 counties in West Virginia and part of Washington County in Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake sale includes 256 producing horizontal wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

More on the Chesapeake sale:

Media reports from Texas indicate that Houston-based Southwestern Energy Co. is also getting 256 producing horizontal wells in southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia..

There are an addiitional 179 non-operating or non-producing wells that are included in the $5.38 billion sale.

Southwestern said it plans to sell off some of its non-core assets to pay for the purchase.

To read more or comment...

Chesapeake selling 413,000 acres in Utica, Marcellus shales

By Bob Downing Published: October 16, 2014

From Chesapeake Energy Corp. today:

OKLAHOMA CITY--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 16, 2014-- Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) announced that it has executed a Purchase and Sale Agreement to sell assets in the Southern Marcellus Shale and a portion of the Eastern Utica Shale in West Virginia to Southwestern Energy Company (NYSE:SWN) (“Southwestern”) for aggregate proceeds of $5.375 billion. The transaction, which is subject to certain customary closing conditions, including the receipt of third-party consents, is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Chesapeake has agreed to sell approximately 413,000 net acres and approximately 1,500 wells in Northern West Virginia and Southern Pennsylvania, of which 435 are in the Marcellus and Utica formations, along with related property, plant and equipment. Average net daily production from these properties was approximately 56,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) during the month of September, consisting of 184,000 Mcf of gas, 20,000 barrels of natural gas liquids and 5,000 barrels of condensate. As of December 31, 2013, net proved reserves associated with these properties were approximately 221 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe).

Doug Lawler, Chesapeake’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “Today’s announcement marks a major step in Chesapeake’s transformation and a dramatic improvement in our financial strength as we seek to maximize value for our shareholders. Earlier this year, we committed to unlocking the significant value inherent in this asset, recognizing the disconnect of its perceived value within our portfolio. It’s important to note that this transaction has no impact on our expected growth profile or on our views around maintaining a disciplined capital program. We expect our full-year production guidance for 2015 to remain in the range of 7-10% growth from 2014 levels adjusted for asset sales. I am very proud of the efforts that our Southern Marcellus team and all of our employees have put into building and developing our assets and creating value for our company. We look forward to deploying the proceeds from this significant transaction in ways that will continue to drive even greater shareholder value.”

To read more or comment...

Poland drilling fails, country still dependent on Russia for gas

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

Shale drilling in Poland has again failed, and that means that Poland is still heavily dependent on Russia for natural gas, Bloomberg News reports.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

PDC completes sale of its share in Marcellus shale joint venture

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From PDC Energy today:

DENVER, October 15, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- PDC Energy, Inc. ("PDC," the "Company," "we" or "us") (Nasdaq:PDCE) today announced that it closed the sale of its fifty percent interest in PDC Mountaineer LLC ("PDCM"), a Marcellus Joint Venture (the "JV") for $250 million . PDC's net pre-tax proceeds were approximately $190 million after repayment of its share of JV debt and other working capital and other adjustments and fees, and subject to customary post-closing adjustments. The net proceeds were comprised of approximately $150 million cash and a $40 million note from the buyer. The buyer also assumed PDC's share of the related firm transportation obligations as well as PDC's share of certain PDCM natural gas hedging positions. The assets produced approximately 26 million cubic feet equivalent of natural gas per day net to PDC in the second quarter of 2014 (99% natural gas) with estimated proved reserves net to PDC of 240 billion cubic feet as of December 31, 2013 . Tudor Pickering Holt acted as advisor on the sale.

Increased Borrowing Base

In addition, PDC announced its borrowing base increased to $700 million from $450 million following the recently completed semi-annual redetermination of its revolving credit facility. The Company elected to maintain its commitment level at $450 million at this time since it expects to be minimally drawn on its revolver at year-end 2014 in part due to the proceeds from the sale its interest in the PDCM JV.

To read more or comment...

Dominion Midstream Partners prices initial stock offering

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

Virginia-based Dominion Midstream Partners LP has priced its initial public stock offering.

Click  here  to read the company's statement from Tuesday.

.

To read more or comment...

Ohio has 1,111 drilled Utica wells, 601 producing Utica wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

Ohio has approved 1,548 Utica shale permits, through Oct. 11.

That includes 1,111 Utica wells that have been drilled, of which 601 are producing, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources said.

Ohio has 44 rigs at work.

Fourteen new permirs were approved: two in Carroll County, one in Harrison County, one in Monroe County and 10 in Noble County.

To read more or comment...

Kinder Morgan to expand facilities on Houston Ship Channel

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

Texas-based Kinder Morgan Energy Partners plans to expand facilities and infrastructure on the Houston Ship Channel.

Click  here  to read the company's prses release.

To read more or comment...

Utica gas, oil production expected to climb in October, EIA says

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration:

Release Date: October 14, 2014 | Next Release: November 10, 2014 | full report

 

 

To read more or comment...

Appalachian gas spot prices well below Henry Hub benchmark

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

Some natural gas prices at trading hubs in the Appalachian Basin's Marcellus Shale play are trading well below the national benchmark spot price at the Henry Hub in Louisiana. Over the past month, spot prices at many Appalachian hubs have dropped below $2 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) on days of low demand, while spot prices at Henry Hub and throughout much of the United States have traded near $4/MMBtu. However, prices at one Appalachian hub, the TCO Pool, which has the ability to back out deliveries from Gulf Coast sources and has pipeline connections that provide access to multiple markets, has maintained close parity to Henry Hub prices.

To read more or comment...

Industry spent $5 billion on Marcellus construction, maintenance

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday:

WASHINGTON, October 14, 2014 ─ API welcomed a new study by the Oil and Natural Gas Industry Labor-Management Committee that showed that industry spending in the Marcellus area on construction and maintenance grew over 60 percent between 2012 and 2013, reaching $5 billion, resulting in a 40 percent increase in construction jobs in eight trades.

“This study reaffirms that responsible domestic energy production is fueling our economic recovery,” said API Executive Vice President Louis Finkel. “We need to fully embrace this energy renaissance and develop the affordable reliable energy all Americans need and want.

“The US energy boom is lifting up the middle class and lowering costs for American families,” said Finkel. “Workers in our industry are earning about seven times the federal minimum wage. These are good paying jobs and we need more of them.

“We must seize this great American made opportunity by enacting smart energy policies. Energy is not a partisan issue; Washington needs to reject duplicative regulations, open the door to US energy exports, and eliminate counterproductive fuel mandates.”

API represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 600 members produce, process, and distribute most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy.

To read more or comment...

Fracking triggered 400 small quakes in Harrison County

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From the Associated Press on Tuesday:

A study suggests that fracking triggered hundreds of small, unnoticeable earthquakes in eastern Ohio late last year, months before the state linked seismic activity to the much-debated oil-and-gas extraction technique.

The report, which appears in the November issue of the journal Seismological Research Letters, identified nearly 400 tremors on a previously unmapped fault in Harrison County between Oct. 1 and Dec. 13, 2013.

To read more or comment...

U.S. manufacturers would benefit from lifting oil export ban

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From a Tuesday press release:

 

 

New Study Finds Benefits to Income, Employment and Economy

To read more or comment...

New Russian players to double world's LNG market by 2018

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

From GlobalData on Wednesday:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 15 October 2014 - The global Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) market, in which Gazprom intends to increase its liquefaction capacity by 250% to 25 million tons per year by 2018, will pose unfamiliar challenges to the company, according to an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

New tracers can identify leaking fracking fluids, scientists say

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

NEW TRACERS CAN IDENTIFY FRACKING FLUIDS IN THE ENVIRONMENT

 

DURHAM, N.C. – Scientists have developed new geochemical tracers that can identify hydraulic fracturing flowback fluids that have been spilled or released into the environment.

The tracers, which were created by a team of U.S. and French researchers, have been field-tested at a spill site in West Virginia and downstream from an oil and gas brine wastewater treatment plant in Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Company to ship Ohio natural gas to Louisiana by adding north-south flow

By Bob Downing Published: October 15, 2014

Natural gas from Ohio’s Utica shale could be moved to the Gulf Coast by the proposed expansion of an existing pipeline Kentucky-based Texas Gas Transmission LLC has proposed adding north-to-south capacity to its existing 690-mile pipeline system. It would retain south-to-north flows.

The Ohio-Louisiana Access Project would run from Lebanon in southwest Ohio to Perrysville, La.

Connections would be built to ship natural gas from eastern Ohio, West Virginia and western Pennsylvania into the pipeline system.

The project must win approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

To read more or comment...

Falling global oil prices could threaten U.S. shale fracking

By Jim Mackinnon Published: October 14, 2014

The continued drop in crude oil prices globally has many U.S producers worried that prices will plunge past break-even points (the prices at which drillers can profitably produce) for American shale production, reports The Feed blog at The American Interest.

The Feed: "This price decline means that debts will pile up for the shale industry, but we’re not at a breaking point yet. Thanks to variation between plays, there’s no single price at which fracking would cease to be profitable in the United States, and for now, oil is still trading above threatening levels. In fact, it’s in a kind of sweet spot for America: high enough to keep the shale boom going, but low enough to be a tremendous nuisance for Vladimir Putin, who needs a price above $100 per barrel to balance Russia’s budget, and Iran, which needs a whopping $140 per barrel to stay in the black. That’s not to mention the economic boost Americans get from lower prices at the gas station.
 

Read the whole thing here.

To read more or comment...

New heat-content data allows for state-by-state comparisons

By Bob Downing Published: October 14, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

The heat content of natural gas, or the amount of energy released when a volume of gas is burned, varies according to the extent that gases with higher heat content than methane are included in delivered gas. EIA is now publishing the heat content of end-use natural gas by state in the Natural Gas Monthly.

To read more or comment...

Appalachian Basin could support three crackers, professor says

By Bob Downing Published: October 14, 2014

JACKSON TWP.: Ohio’s Utica shale in generating enough liquid ethane to support new so-called cracker plants.

That assessment came Tuesday from Cleveland State University economist Iryna Lendel, a speaker at the day-long Utica Summit II at Kent State University’s Stark Campus.

At least four cracker cracks to turn ethane into ethylene, a key ingredient in making plastic, have been proposed in Ohio, West Virginia and western Pennsylvania.

The Utica and Marcellus shale natural gas wells in those three states are producing enough ethane to support three large cracker plants, said Lendel, whose comments were based on a preliminary economic assessment of the Utica shale. The report is expected to be completed by December. .

To read more or comment...

New Kent group is against Issue 21, community bill of rights

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

From the new Kent-based Citizens for Good Legislation today:

A bipartisan coalition of elected, business, community and labor leaders announced today the formation of Citizens for Good Legislation, a group aimed at educating citizens about Issue 21. The coalition is urging Kent residents to vote no on the measure.

While the coalition supports protecting Kent’s environment, Issue 21 will not accomplish that goal, being poorly written and overly broad. Contrary to what those pushing the measure claim, Issue 21 will have no impact on fracking, which is governed by state law. What it will do is subject the city and its businesses to lawsuits; threaten development and progress in our city; kill jobs; and hurt our city, community, and citizens.

The coalition offered the following comments:

To read more or comment...

O'Reilly to speak on Wednesday at Youngstown State

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

Cincinnati law professor Jim O'Reilly will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 15, in Youngstown.

His talk will be held in Room 2000 of Moser Hall at Youngstown State University.

His talk is entitled: "If You Break It, You (Should) Own It: Damage to Ohio by Frackers Will Be Paid For by Our Taxes."

Admission is free. On-street parking available on Lincoln Avemue and nearby streets after 5 p.m.

To read more or comment...

Detroit Free Press: A look at NEXUS, ET Rover pipelines

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

The Detroit Free Press on Sunday took a look at what it calls the competing natural gas pipelines that will cross northern Ohio to get Uitica and Marcellus shale natural gas to market.

That is the NEXUS pipeline by DTE Energy, Spectra and Enbridge and the ET Rover pipeline by Energy Transfer Partners.

There's a third option, too, as TransCanada is looking at extending a pipeline from southeast Ohio to southwest Michigan.

Click  here  to read the full article.

To read more or comment...

Investment in Ohio Utica shale hits $22.3 billion, report says

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

Investments in Ohio's Utica shale have jumped to $22.3 billion, according to a new analysis by the Bricker & Eeckler law firm.

That's up from $18.8 billion last April.

It was $12.2 billion a year ago.

Click  here  to read the full story from Columbus Business First.

To read more or comment...

Marcellus dilemna: Getting rid of radioactive drilling wastes

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Sunday looked at a growing Marcellus shale dilemna: How to get rid of radioactive drilling wastes.

Click   here  to read the story.

To read more or comment...

Pittsburgh area gets 75 oil trains per week, according to records

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

Up to 75 oil trains per week rumble through Allegheny County around Pittsburgh, each carrying up to 1 million gallons of oil bound for East Coast refineries.

That information was reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from state records.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Targa to acquire Atlas midstream assets for $7.7 billion

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

Texas-based Targa Resources Corp. is acquiring Pennsylvania-based Atlas Energy LP and its midstream assets for $7.7 billion.

Click  here  to read the full story from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

To read more or comment...

Pickens may invest in McClendon company, subsidiaries

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

T. Boone Pickens may invest in Aubrey McClendon's American Energy Partners and its subsidiaries, should they go public.

McClendon, the former CEO on Oklahoma-based Chesapeake Energy, has started his new company and is heavily invested in Ohio's Utica shale.

Click  here  to read the story from Tom Knox of Columbus Business First.

To read more or comment...

Welldog, Shell develop new service to locate shale gas, liquids

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

From Wyoming-based Welldog last week:

October 7, 2014 (Laramie, Wyo) – WellDog announced today that it has collaborated with Shell International Exploration & Production, Inc. (‘Shell’) over the past eighteen months to develop a new technical service for locating natural gas and natural gas liquids in shale formations.

This announcement follows a laboratory and field development program undertaken by the two companies, leveraging WellDog’s patented downhole Raman spectroscopy technology and Shell’s geochemical and petrophysical experience in shale gas evaluation.

The new service is directed at identifying the locations where natural gas and natural gas liquids occur in shale formations, allowing producers to focus development efforts, reduce drilling costs, optimize production, and reduce the number of hydraulic fracturing stages and associated water usage.

To read more or comment...

Oil companies interested in Liberia, despite Ebola threat

By Bob Downing Published: October 13, 2014

From GlobalData last week:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Liberia’s Hydrocarbon Potential Sparking Interest in Current Bid Round, Despite Ebola Challenges, says GlobalData Analyst

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 9 October 2014 - Liberia’s current invitation-only bidding round has ignited interest among international oil companies, due to the country’s considerable hydrocarbon potential and favorable fiscal terms. However, the Ebola virus outbreak and Liberia’s poor infrastructure will pose challenges to the round, says an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania court to review leasing plan for state parks, forests

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett's plan to raise $95 million from drillers by leasing 25,000 acres of state park/state forest land is being reviewed by the Commonwealth Court.

The seven judges heard arguments this week on a legal challenge to Corbett's plan.

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

To read more or comment...

Wisconsin county shuts down fracking-sand operation

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

A Wisconsin county has shut down a fracking sand operation for illegally dumping waste water into an unlined pond and not having required permits.

The operation near Independence in Trempealeau County was operated by Texas-based Superior Silica Sand.

Click  here  to see the full story.

.

To read more or comment...

Occidental seeking to sell North Dakota oil assets for $3 billion

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

From Bloomberg News on Tuesday:

By Bradley Olson and Matthew Monks

Occidental Petroleum Corp.,  the U.S. oil producer that is restructuring to focus on its most profitable operations, is seeking to sell oil assets in North Dakota for as much as $3 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Occidental is working with investment bank Tudor Pickering Holt & Co. to sell about 335,000 net drilling acres in the Williston Basin, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they were discussing private information. The holdings include a part of North Dakota’s Bakken formation, an area that has been less successful for Occidental because of higher costs, though it’s one of the fastest-growing oil-producing regions in the U.S.

To read more or comment...

Spectra to expand Rockies-to-Midwest oil pipeline system

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

From Spectra Energy today:

Spectra Energy (NYSE: SE) and Spectra Energy Partners (NYSE: SEP) today announced a proposed expansion of their oil pipeline network, with service from Guernsey, WY to Patoka, IL. This announcement is in response to strong market demand to move light, sweet, U.S. domestic crude from multiple supply areas, including the Bakken, the Denver-Julesburg Basin and the Powder River Basin, to Patoka, where shippers will be able to access Midwest and Gulf Coast markets. The expansion may enable future access to Eastern U.S. refiners as Spectra Energy continues to explore opportunities to serve those markets as well.

“We’ve had very strong indications of interest from shippers and believe that producers will achieve higher netback prices by accessing high value markets via this expansion,” said Greg Ebel, Spectra Energy’s chairman, chief executive officer and president. “We are pleased by the strong demand we have seen for our existing crude oil system capacity. This success is driving our commitment to maximize our growth through organic expansion, and we believe this new option will be a welcome solution for customers wanting to move domestic oil to key U.S. markets.”

The expansion, which will be in service in 2017 with an initial capacity of approximately 400,000 barrels per day, will provide unprecedented access for shippers to reach markets in eastern PADD 2 and the flexibility to meet light crude refinery demand on the Gulf Coast.

To read more or comment...

Energy imports as share of consumption at lowest level in 29 years

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

Total U.S. net imports of energy as a share of energy consumption fell to their lowest level in 29 years for the first six months of 2014. Total energy consumption in the first six months of 2014 was 3% above consumption during the first six months of 2013, but consumption growth was outpaced by increases in total energy production. These changes led to a 17% reduction in net imports compared with the first six months of 2013.

To read more or comment...

Southwest methane hot spot tied to coal, not fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

From Bloomberg News:

A tiny patch of the southwestern U.S. produces the nation’s highest concentrations of methane, the potent greenhouse gas that President Barack Obama has vowed to tackle as part of his assault on climate-change pollution.

The hot spot near the intersection of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah accounts for almost 10 percent of all methane from natural gas in the U.S., researchers said in a paper published today by the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The area, about half the size of Connecticut, is a major source of gas harvested from coal mines, according to a National Aeronautics and Space Administration statement announcing the study.

The gas measured in the study comes from leaks in processing equipment. Environmental groups have pushed Obama to regulate methane leaks as drilling using hydraulic fracturing has boomed. Eric Kort, the paper’s lead researcher, said it’s a mistake to focus only on fracking rather than existing industries.

To read more or comment...

Magnum Hunter completes asset sale in Divide County, N.D.

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

Magnum Hunter Resources on Thursday announced that it has completed the sale of certain non-core assets in Divide County, N.D., in the Bakken shale.

The purchaser was not identified.

 The purchase price was $84.7 million.

Here's the company statement:.

To read more or comment...

What shale CEOs tell investors and the SEC at odds

By Bob Downing Published: October 10, 2014

From Bloomberg News on Thursday:

By Asjylyn Loder and Isaac Arnsdorf

Oct. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Lee Tillman, chief executive officer of Marathon Oil Corp., told investors last month that the company was potentially sitting on the equivalent of 4.3 billion barrels in its U.S. shale acreage.

That number was 5.5 times higher than the proved reserves Marathon reported to federal regulators.

To read more or comment...

Susan G. Komen, Baker Hughes team up in cancer fight

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure, one of the leading groups fighting breast cancer, is partnering with a major drilling supply company in a move that has puzzled some.

Susan G. Komen is working with Texas-based Baker Hughes. It is distributing1,000 pink-painted drill bits as a cancer reminder and donating $100,000 to the cancer fight.

That is raising eyebrows in some circles because of the possible cancer threat from fracking chemicals and low-level radiation in the drilling process, critics say.

Click   here  to read the Huffington Post story.

To read more or comment...

Concerns raised by growing number of gas, oil pipelines in U.S.

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

Yale Envirornment 360 is taking a look at the proliferation of pieplines across the United States in the wake of shale dtrilling.

That is raising concerns in some areas.

Click  here  to read the story.

 

To read more or comment...

EQT files complaint against Pennsylvania for Tioga charges

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

Pittsburgh-based EQT Production Corp, is fighting back.

The company announced this week that it has filed a complaint with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Services in connection with a 2012 problem in Tioga County.

The state has said it intends to seek a $4.5 million fine for the company for a leaking impoundment.

The company is challenging the state agency's interpretation of the state's clean streams  legislation.

To read more or comment...

Ohio University researchers get $1.45 million fromThird Frontier

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

Ohio's Third Frontier has awarded a $1.45 million grant to Ohio University researchers to commercialize a method to treat produced waste water on-site.

The grant goes to the Ohio Shale Platform led by Dr. Jason Trembly, associate director of the Ohio Coal Research Center.

The project, if successful, could reduce Ohio's dependence on injection wells to get rid of liquid drilling wastes.

Click  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania state police, security firms keep eye on activists

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

Pennsylvania state police are working closely with private security firms hired by drillers in the Marcellus shale to keep a close eye on dissenters opposed to drilling, says the Earth Island Journal.

Its investigation was printed today in the Pittsburgh City Paper and the Philadelphia City Paper as well as by the Earth Island Journal.

Click  here  to see the report by Adam Federman.

To read more or comment...

Federal agency issues final EIS on Corpus Christi LNG project

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Wednesday:

 


FERC Staff Issues Final Environmental Impact Statement on the Corpus Christi LNG Project (Docket Nos. CP12-507-000 and CP12-508-000)
Issued October 8, 2014
 

The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission or FERC) has prepared a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Corpus Christi LNG Project (Project). The Project is proposed by Corpus Christi Liquefaction, LLC and Cheniere Corpus Christi Pipeline, L.P. (collectively referred to as Cheniere). All land-based facilities associated with the Project are located in San Patricio County, Texas, with the marine facilities located in Nueces County, Texas.

To read more or comment...

Carrizo Oil & Gas reports increase to borrowing base

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From Carrizo Oil & gas today::

HOUSTON , Oct. 9, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc. (Nasdaq:CRZO) today announced that its banking syndicate, led by Wells Fargo as administrative agent, has completed their semi-annual borrowing base redetermination, resulting in an increase to the borrowing base from $570.0 million to $675.0 million . However, the Company has elected to limit the lenders' aggregate commitment to $585.0 million . The lenders' aggregate commitment can be increased to the full $675.0 million by increasing the commitment of one or more lenders. The next redetermination of the borrowing base is expected in the Spring of 2015.

Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc. is a Houston -based energy company actively engaged in the exploration, development, and production of oil and gas from resource plays located in the United States . Our current operations are principally focused in proven, producing oil and gas plays primarily in the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas , the Utica Shale in Ohio , the Niobrara Formation in Colorado , and the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania .

To read more or comment...

Price spread between ethane, propane drops propane use

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

Republished October 9, 9:45 a.m. to correct an error in the graph.

To read more or comment...

New federal report examines legal issues tied to fracking

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

The federal Congressional Research Service has released a new report looking at legal issues linked to hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

It is a 38-page report.

Click  here to access the report.

To read more or comment...

Three charts explain why Chesapeake is drilling in Utica shale

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From  the Trefis Team on Chesapeake Energy recently:

Though Texas’ Eagle Ford shale will be the main driver of Chesapeake Energy’s (NYSE:CHK) oil production growth for the next few years, the company’s acreage in Ohio’s Utica shale should also be a important contributor to its natural gas liquids (NGLs) production growth. Chesapeake was one of the first companies to recognize the potential of the Utica Shale, having discovered it in 2010. Now, Chesapeake is the most active driller and largest leasehold owner in the Utica, with about 1 million net acres under its belt.

In the Q2 2014, Chesapeake’s Utica shale production was 67 million barrels of oil equivalents per day(mboe/d), up 373% from a year ago and up 34% from the first quarter of 2014. Of the total production, Oil accounted for 10%, natural gas 60% and natural gas liquids like ethane, butane and propane about 30%. While that’s an impressive rate of growth, it could have been even higher. At the end of last year, the company had 208 wells in various stages of completion, with many awaiting pipeline connections.

As the gas processing and pipeline takeaway capacity at Utica is expected to expand significantly this year, this should change. With the addition of a second train in December, the processing capacity from the Kensington plant — a joint venture between Access Midstream Partners, EV Energy Partners and M3 — had doubled by the beginning of February. Access Midstream and EV Energy are also in the process of laying gathering pipelines to deliver Chesapeake’s production to the plant. The presence of a few other such projects means that Chesapeake can double its gross processing capacity in Utica from 400 million cubic feet per day as of the end of 2013, to 800 million cubic feet per day by the end of this year. This should allow the company to get cracking on many of the backlogged wells and generate sales, as well as boost its production.

To read more or comment...

W. Va. cracker plant signs license agreements with Swiss firm

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From Swiss-based INEOS Technologies that has signed a contract for the technology to be used in the proposed ethane cracker plant near Parkerswburg, W. Va..

The release came out on Oct. 1:

INEOS Signs Polyethylene Technology License Agreements with ASCENT

INEOS Technologies announced today that it has entered into license agreements for its Innovene S and Innovene G polyethylene technologies to be used by the proposed ASCENT (Appalachian Shale Cracker Enterprise) petrochemical complex currently being evaluated by Odebrecht and Braskem in West Virginia, United States.

To read more or comment...

Canton to host Utica Summit II on Tuesday, Oct. 14

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

From the Canton Chamber of Coomerce:

 

Utica Summit II is an event that brings business people together to talk about what can be done to fuel transportation across the United States with Utica energy, to build sustainable businesses powered by Utica energy, and to grow businesses that use Utica energy as its raw product to create industrial and consumer goods.

The event, presented by the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce,

To read more or comment...

Utica shale drilling to create 18,000 new Ohio jobs, study says

By Bob Downing Published: October 9, 2014

Shale drilling is expected to create 18,000 jobs in Ohio over the next 10 years, according to a new study.

About 21,000 are employed in the shale industry in Ohio, according to IHS Economics.

Click  here  to read more.

To read more or comment...

Ohio has 1,102 drilled Utica wells, 584 producing Utica wells

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

Ohio has approved 1,534 Utica shale permits, as of Oct. 4.

That includes 1,102 Utica wells that have been drilled and 584 Utica wells that are producing, reports the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Ohio has 45 rigs at work.

Three new permits were approved: two in Harrison County and one in Noble County.

To read more or comment...

Drilling boosts Colorado economy by $23 billion, new report says

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute today:

DENVER, October 8, 2014 ─ A new study shows that, in 2012 alone, oil and natural gas development generated over $200 million for Colorado schools, supported nearly 94,000 Colorado jobs, and created over $23 billion in state economic activity.

“Thanks to innovations in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, Colorado’s is playing a leading role in America’s energy revolution,” said API Vice President for Regulatory and Economic Policy Kyle Isakower. “For state leaders, including the governor’s commission, it’s important to understand how vital energy is to the state’s economy, and how much local schools, taxpayers, and workers benefit from responsible energy production.”

The report was conducted by the University of Colorado Boulder’s Leeds School of Business and commissioned by API. It examines the Colorado’s oil and natural gas sector on a county-by-county basis, including associated revenue streams for schools, roads, parks, healthcare, and more.

“Over the last few years, Colorado has grown as an energy producer, and that has had a measurable impact on employment, wages, and funding for schools and public services,” said University of Colorado researcher Brian Lewandowski. “Most of the actual production occurred in just five counties, but new business activity associated with energy – management, engineering, financial – was distributed across the state, creating jobs that pay about double the state average.”

For example, in 2012, La Plata County experienced $1.1 billion in economic activity associated with oil and natural gas development, the report estimates. The county’s local energy industry supported 1,350 direct jobs, paid $116.7 million in wages, and generated $12.6 million in tax revenues, including more than $3.5 million for public safety. The county’s school districts, such as Bayfield and Durango, relied on oil and natural gas to generate 48 percent and 32 percent, respectively, of property tax proceeds.

In total, the study found that Colorado’s 31,900 direct industry workers garnered $3.2 billion in labor income in 2012. The industry generated over $410.3 million in 2012 government revenue, including more than $141 million directly to county property taxes. Although the report examines only upstream and midstream activities such as extraction and transportation, an earlier analysis by PWC estimated that the entire oil and natural gas sector supported more than 213,000 direct, indirect, and induced jobs in Colorado.
 

To read more or comment...

Eco-groups expanding legal fight against crude rail shipments

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

Environmental groups are stepping up the legal fight against crude-by-rail shipments, according to the BakerHostetlwer law firm.

Click  here  to read the law firm's blog report.

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania explains proposed $4.5 million fine against EQT

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

Here's the Tuesday statement from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on the proposed $4.5 million fine against EQT Production Co. for problems in 2012 at a Tioga County well:

WILLIAMSPORT -- The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced that it has filed a complaint with the state Environmental Hearing Board requesting a $4.5 million civil penalty from EQT Production Company of Washington, Pa., for a major pollution incident in 2012 at the company’s Phoenix Pad S location in Duncan Township, Tioga County.

“EQT fails to recognize the ongoing environmental harm from the significant amount of waste released by its leaking six million gallon impoundment,” Acting DEP Secretary Dana Aunkst said. “This action was necessary because the company has not been cooperative during our investigation. The department does not tolerate this unacceptable attitude toward compliance and proper protection of Pennsylvania’s environment.”

When EQT originally proposed the impoundment in its earth disturbance permit, the company stated it would be used to store fresh water only. However, after construction was complete in late 2011, the company decided to use the impoundment to store flowback water from Marcellus drilling operations to be used for fracking.

To read more or comment...

EQT, NextEra: Firm commitments for Mountain Valley Pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

Pittsburgh-based EQT Corp. is moving ahead with firm capacity commitments for its Mountain Valley Pipeline.

The 300-mile line will traverse West Virginia and Virginia.

It will deliver Utica and Marcellus shale natural gas to Virginia.

The project is being developed with NextEra Energy Inc.

To read more or comment...

Marathon Petroleum closes on purchase of Hess retail operations

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From Marathon Petroleum Corp. last week:

FINDLAY, Ohio, Oct. 1, 2014 - Marathon Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: MPC) announced that on Sept. 30, 2014, its subsidiary, Speedway LLC, closed its acquisition of Hess' retail operations and related assets. The $2.82 billion transaction includes a $2.37 billion base purchase price, capital leases that were cash settled at closing for $263 million, and $194 million of estimated working capital, subject to post-closing adjustments. The transaction was announced May 22, 2014, and includes all of Hess' retail operations, transport operations, and shipper history on various pipelines.

"This transformative acquisition provides Speedway a significant growth platform by expanding our retail presence to 23 states throughout the East Coast and Southeast," said MPC President and Chief Executive Officer Gary R. Heminger. "Growing Speedway's footprint as a premier convenience store operator into the Eastern U.S. supports our strategic focus of increased investment in our stable cash-flow businesses. We believe targeting the significant synergy potential in this business, including best practices and economies of scale, should drive continued earnings growth into the future and enhance the value proposition to MPC investors."

###
About Marathon Petroleum Corp.

To read more or comment...

Dominion Midstream Partners kicks off initial public offering

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From Dominion Midstream on Monday:

RICHMOND, Va., Oct. 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Dominion Midstream Partners, LP (Dominion Midstream), a Delaware limited partnership and a subsidiary of Dominion Resources, Inc. (Dominion) (NYSE: D), has launched its initial public offering of 17,500,000 common units representing limited partner interests pursuant to a Registration Statement on Form S-1 previously filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Dominion Midstream also expects to grant the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 2,625,000 common units at the initial public offering price. Dominion Midstream has been approved to list its common units on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "DM," subject to official notice of issuance.

The common units being offered represent a 27.4 percent limited partner interest in Dominion Midstream, or a 31.5 percent limited partner interest if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units. Dominion, through certain of its subsidiaries, will own the remaining 72.6 percent limited partner interest in Dominion Midstream, or 68.5 percent if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units, as well as the general partner of Dominion Midstream, which entity is the holder of all of Dominion Midstream's incentive distribution rights.

Barclays, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan, BofA Merrill Lynch, Goldman, Sachs & Co., UBS Investment Bank and Morgan Stanley are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering. RBC Capital Markets and Scotiabank / Howard Weil are acting as co-managers for the offering. The offering is being made only by means of a written prospectus. Once it becomes available, potential investors can obtain a prospectus that meets the requirements of Section 10 of the Securities Act of 1933 from:

To read more or comment...

American Water Works may provide fracking services

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From Bloomberg News:

By Justin Doon

American Water Works Co., the largest publicly traded water utility in the U.S., is in discussions about providing additional services to fracking companies, Chief Executive Officer Susan Story said.

The Voorhees, New Jersey-based company also is in talks with energy producers on ways to reuse water from hydraulic fracturing that otherwise would have to be disposed of, Story said in an interview in New York.

To read more or comment...

Lower demand, higher supply drive down oil prices

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administartion today:

 

The price of North Sea Brent crude oil has fallen to around $91 per barrel, the lowest level in more than two years and about 21% lower than its year-to-date peak of $115 per barrel on June 19. Before its recent decline, average monthly Brent spot prices had traded within a narrow $5 per barrel range, from $107 to $112 per barrel, for 13 consecutive months through July 2014.

To read more or comment...

Kent activists schedule Global Frackdown rally on Saturday

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

Two groups are organizing Saturday’s Global Frackdown rally for clean renewable energy and an end to fracking for natural gas in Kent.

The event will be held at 1 p.m. at the Kent Gazebo at Main and Franklin streets.

Speakers include Tish O’Dell of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, Ron Prosek of the Northeast Ohio Gas Accountability Project, Ted Voneida of the Kent Environmental Council and Gwen Fischer of Concerned Citizens Ohio.

Music will be provided by Sue Jeffers and Barb Withee.

To read more or comment...

Indonesia can revitalize gas-oil sector with foreign capital, skills

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From GlobalData today:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Jokowi Should Act Now to Reform Indonesia’s Upstream Oil and Gas Sector, says GlobalData Analyst

LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 8 October 2014 - The election of Joko Widodo, popularly known as “Jokowi”, as Indonesia’s new president presents the ideal opportunity for the country to implement the reforms necessary to revitalize its upstream oil and gas sector, by attracting foreign capital and expertise, says an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

To read more or comment...

EDF, EPA disagree over methane emissions numbers

By Bob Downing Published: October 8, 2014

From the Environmental Defense Fund's Energy Exchange Blog:

 

Why EPA’s Press Release Doesn’t Reflect the Real Methane Emissions Numbers

By Mark Brownstein, Associate Vice President, US Climate and Energy Program

To read more or comment...

Pennsylvania pursuing record $4.5 million fine for leaking waste pit

By Bob Downing Published: October 7, 2014

From the Associated Press today:

Pennsylvania environmental regulators are pursuing a record $4.5 million fine against a gas driller over what they describe as a major case of pollution from a leaking waste pit.

The Department of Environmental Protection filed a civil complaint against EQT Corp. on Tuesday, accusing the Pittsburgh-based company of polluting streams and groundwater and harming trees and other vegetation around its impoundment in Duncan Township, Tioga County.

The company has been uncooperative during the investigation and “fails to recognize the ongoing environmental harm” from its impoundment, Acting DEP Secretary Dana Aunkst said in a statement.

To read more or comment...

Lower household heating bills expected this winter

By Bob Downing Published: October 7, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

After the unusually cold winter of 2013-14, U.S. households can expect lower heating expenditures this winter (October through March) compared with last winter. According to EIA's Short-Term Energy and Winter Fuels Outlook, average household expenditures for homes heating primarily with natural gas will total $649 this winter, a $31 decline from last winter's average. Homes heating primarily with electric heat are expected to spend $938 ($17 less). Homes using propane or heating oil have higher expenditures on average ($1,724 and $1,992, respectively) than homes using natural gas and electricity, but still lower ($652 less and $362 less, respectively) compared to last year.

Read More ›

To read more or comment...

Sunoco Logistics' new pipeline is public utility, state panel rules

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

Sunoco Logistics Partners and its proposed Mariner East pipeline have public utility status, the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission ruled on Thursday.

The voteby the state panel was 4-1.

That's is a major victory for Sunoco Logistics and a major blow to pipeline opponents.

The company wants to repurpose an petroleum pipeline to carry ethane and propane from the Marcellus shale east to Philadelphia and Marcus Hook.

To read more or comment...

Abruzzo resigns from Pennsylvania's DEP in lewd email scandal

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

The head of Pennsylvania's  Department of Environmental Protection resigned on Thursday, amidst a scandal over lewd emails.

Chris Abruzzo departed.

He is one of eight aides to Gov. Tom Crobett to be implicated in the scandal.

Click  here  to read the story from NPR's StateImpact Pennsylvania.

To read more or comment...

Linn Energy announces $2.3 billion asset sales

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

From Linn Energy today:

HOUSTON, Oct. 3, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- LINN Energy, LLC (Nasdaq:LINE) ("LINN" or the "Company") and LinnCo, LLC (Nasdaq:LNCO) ("LinnCo") announced today that LINN has signed a definitive agreement to sell its entire position in the Granite Wash and Cleveland plays located in the Texas Panhandle and western Oklahoma to privately held institutional affiliates of EnerVest, Ltd., for a contract price of $1.95 billion. LINN also announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement with Fleur de Lis Energy, LLC to sell its Wolfberry positions in Ector and Midland counties in the Permian Basin for a contract price of $350 million.

Proceeds from these sales are expected to finance the Company's $2.3 billion acquisition of assets from Devon Energy Corporation, which closed in August 2014. Both of today's announced sales are expected to be tax efficient upon successful completion of a reverse 1031 like-kind exchange.

The Granite Wash and Cleveland properties sold include approximately 145,000 net acres, 195 MMcfe/d of current production, 755 Bcfe of year-end 2013 proved reserves and related midstream facilities. LINN is running a 4-rig drilling program and has planned to spend approximately $210 million of capital on these assets in 2014.

To read more or comment...

Stone Energy testing first Utica well, to boost Marcellus drilling

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

From Louisiana-based Stone Energy last week:

LAFAYETTE, La., Sept. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Stone Energy Corporation (NYSE: SGY) today provided an operational and capital expenditure update. In the deep water, the Cardona development project has been proceeding ahead of schedule and is now expected to begin initial production by December 1, 2014 , only six months after drilling the Cardona South well. We believe that gross production will reach approximately 12,000 Boe per day for the two wells (65% working interest). In Appalachia, our Utica Shale well has been successfully drilled with testing expected in the fourth quarter of 2014. Additionally, we continue to realize efficiencies in our Marcellus drilling program and now expect to drill over 35 wells in 2014 compared to the original forecast of 30 wells. Long lead time items have been ordered for the Amethyst deep water project, with production expected by mid-2016. Regarding rig commitments, progress has been made on securing a multi-year deep water rig contract commencing in mid-2015, as well as securing a platform rig for the Amberjack platform program, which is expected to start in the first quarter of 2015. Lastly, Stone recently acquired a 40% working interest in the Noble Energy -operated Madison prospect located in Mississippi Canyon Block 479, which is scheduled to be drilled in the fourth quarter of 2014.

As a result of the drilling successes, the follow-up development activity, the added Utica test well, the increased number of Marcellus wells and the Madison prospect, the Board of Directors has authorized an increase in the 2014 capital expenditure budget from $825 million to $895 million , which excludes major divestitures and acquisitions and capitalized SG&A and interest. The final 2014 capital expenditure amount and the allocation of capital across the various areas is subject to change based on several factors including permitting times, rig availability, non-operator decisions, farm-in opportunities and commodity pricing.

Stone Energy is an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana with additional offices in New Orleans , Houston and Morgantown, West Virginia . Stone is engaged in the acquisition, exploration, and development of properties in the Deep Water Gulf of Mexico , Appalachia, and the onshore and offshore Gulf Coast . For additional information, contact Kenneth H. Beer , Chief Financial Officer, at 337-521-2210 phone, 337-521-9880 fax or via e-mail at CFO@StoneEnergy.com

To read more or comment...

Methane mitigation industry expected to grow to curtail leaks

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

From 1 to 10 percent of natural gas escapes into the air.

It is lost product for drillers and adds to global warming gases.

A new report suggests that the nation's growing methane mitigation industry can boost economic development in key energy states and help reduce oil and gas air pollution from leaking methane, according to the Environmental Defense Fund.

As the federal government considers standards to limit methane emissions from oil and gas operations, the demand for this equipment and services is expected to rise.

To read more or comment...

Ohio Listening Project survey: Drilling is having negative impacts

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

From the Communities United for Responsible Energy and the Ohio Organizing Collaborative late tHURSDAY:

CURE Listening Project exposes truth about residents’ experiences living in Utica Shale counties

 

On Thursday, October 2, Communities United for Responsible Energy (CURE) and the Ohio Organizing Collaborative (OOC) were joined by nearly 200 local residents and officials during the group’s highly-anticipated release of the Ohio Shale County Listening Project highlighting the affects of the Shale Fracking boom on local residents and their families at Christ Church 353 Moody Ave. SW).

To read more or comment...

New York, drillers agree on increased risk-disclosure to investors

By Bob Downing Published: October 3, 2014

From New York Attornet General Eric Schneiderman today:

A.G. SCHNEIDERMAN REACHES AGREEMENT WITH NATURAL GAS DEVELOPERS TO INCREASE DISCLOSURE OF FRACKING RISKS TO INVESTORS

Anadarko Petroleum And EOG Resources Commit To Disclosing More Information On Financial Effects Of Regulation, Litigation, And Environmental Impacts Related To Hydraulic Fracturing

Schneiderman: Investors Have A Right To Know All Relevant Information About Risks

To read more or comment...

Beck Energy, Munroe Falls back in court again over local control

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2014

Ravenna-based Beck Energy Corp., already ensnarled in a major court fight on drilling with the city of Munroe Falls, has filed a new legal action against the city.

The company is seeking an injunction to block Munroe Falls from illegally interfering with its still-incomplete cleanup of a spill at the Twin Falls No. 1 natural gas well off North River Road.

Beck and Munroe Falls are already locked in a legal battle over whether the city can control drilling or whether the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has sole responsibility over drilling in the state. That case is pending before the Ohio Supreme Court and is being closely followed by drillers and those who want to curtail drilling by pushing local control.

That fight involves a different Beck Energy well proposed of Munroe Falls Avenue.

To read more or comment...

Stark County to host Oct. 8 meeting on Nexus gas pipeline

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2014

A company building a 250-mile natural gas pipeline through the Akron-Canton area is holding a public meeting on the project on Wednesday, Oct. 8.

The meeting organized by Nexus Gas Transmission on its Nexus pipeline will run from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at Stark State College in Jackson Township.

The informal open house-style meeting for landowners will be held in Room M100 in the school’s Business & Entrepreneurship Center, 6200 Frank Ave. NW.

Pipeline officials will be on hand to answer questions about the project that would transport gas from eastern Ohio’s Utica shale to Detroit, southern Ontario and Chicago.

To read more or comment...

LIUNA head hails federal decision on Cove Point LNG terminal

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2014

From a press release on Wednesday:

Washington, D.C. (October 1, 2014) – Terry O’Sullivan, General President of LIUNA – the Laborers’ International Union of North America – made the following statement on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approval of the Cove Point LNG facility:

"The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval of the Cove Point LNG facility is welcome news for working men and women in the construction industry and for surrounding communities which will benefit economically. Now that the project has undergone a fair and lengthy review, FERC should move quickly to a final notice to proceed. That will clearly demonstrate that it is possible to balance the needs of our economy and our environment, without bending regulations to politics, as has occurred with the still-stalled Keystone XL pipeline."

To read more or comment...

ZaZa Energy releases production data from East Texas well

By Bob Downing Published: October 2, 2014

ZaZa Energy Corp. has released 30-day production results from a horizontal well in Walker County in East Texas.

Click  here  to read the company's statement.

To read more or comment...

State agencies on right track in overseeing drilling, report says

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From the Ground Water Protection Council today:

 

Ground Water Protection Council Report Shows State Regulatory Activity is Increasing

 

To read more or comment...

Exxon Mobil releases new report on shale risk for shareholders

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

Earlier this week, Exxon Mobil released a report looking at the risks associated with shale development.

There is risk but it is a more desirable process than other forms of energy development, the energy giant said.

Click  here  to read more.

To read more or comment...

Baker Hughes begins 100 percent disclosure of fracking liquids

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From Texas-based Baker Hughes today:

HOUSTON , Oct. 1, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Baker Hughes Incorporated (NYSE: BHI) announced today that it has implemented a new policy of disclosing 100% of the chemistry contained within its hydraulic fracturing fluid systems, without the use of any trade secret designations.

The company announced in March of this year its plans to provide complete lists of all of its products and chemical constituents for all wells it fractures using its hydraulic fracturing fluid products, without detailing specific product formulations. In so doing, Baker Hughes hopes to increase public trust in the process of hydraulic fracturing, while still protecting the market-driven commercial innovation that has helped the company become a global industry leader.

"Introducing greater transparency about the chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing process and protecting the ability to innovate are not conflicting goals," said Derek Mathieson , Baker Hughes chief strategy officer. "The policy we are implementing today is consistent with our belief that we are partners in solving industry challenges, and that we have a responsibility to provide the public with the information they want and deserve. It simultaneously enables us to protect proprietary information that is critical to our growth."

To read more or comment...

Report cites increase in oil shipments by rail near Great Lakes

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From the Great Lakes Commission today:

Great Lakes Commission report: Dramatic increases in crude oil production and transportation via rail

http://glc.org/announce/2014-glc-oil-report/

 

To read more or comment...

Eco-groups submit comments on new federal crude-by-rail rules

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From a press release today by two eco-groups:

Riverkeeper and Scenic Hudson Submit Comments Calling on DOT to Enact Immediate, Comprehensive Changes to Crude Oil Rail Shipping Regulations

New draft regulations allow dangerous DOT-111 cars to remain on the rails for shipment of heavy tar sands crude and do not go far enough, fast enough, to protect the Hudson River and local communities

HUDSON VALLEY, NY – October 1, 2014 – Riverkeeper and Scenic Hudson jointly submitted comments on new regulations proposed by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) regarding new designs and other measures for reducing the risks of shipping explosive crude oil by rail. The formal comments describe in detail how and why the proposed safety upgrades fail to comply with federal law, sharply criticize PHMSA’s proposal for failing to require strict safety upgrades that will protect the public and urge the agency to use its emergency order authority to implement vital, immediate changes. PHMSA’s rulemaking is replete with loopholes and weak safety proposals, including:

“Put simply, these rules won’t stop the next bomb train disaster,” said Paul Gallay, President and Hudson Riverkeeper. “We deserve real protection for communities and the environment—not a rule that defers to the rail and oil industries at every turn.”

To read more or comment...

Drilling accident halts Antero Resources in Doddridge County

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has halted Antero Resources drilling in Doddridge County in the wake of a drilling accident.

The drilling was halted near West Union after drilling apparently hit on operating well, officials said.

Coick  here  to read the full story.

To read more or comment...

Natural gas storage injections continue into November

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From the U.S. Energy Information Administration today:

 

In natural gas markets, analysts refer to the storage injection season as running from April 1 through October 31 of each year, but these dates are not strict cutoff points. In each of the past 11 years, going back to the first full year of EIA's weekly gas storage surveys, there have been net injections during one or more weeks in November. In 6 of those years, there have been multiple weeks of net injections. There have also been multiple weeks within the injection season when the weekly change resulted in a net withdrawal.

To read more or comment...

Enterprise Products, Oiltanking Partners to merge

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

Texas-based Enterprise Products Partners LP announced a two-steo plan to merge with Oiltanking Partners LP.

Click  here  to see what's planned.

To read more or comment...

Dominion accepts 79 conditions at Cove Point LNG facility

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From Dominion on Tuesday:

Sep 30, 2014

RICHMOND, Va., Sept. 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Dominion (NYSE: D) today notified the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that it has accepted the commission's order approving the Cove Point LNG liquefaction and export project and all of FERC's environmental conditions.

To read more or comment...

CONE Midstream prices upsized initial stock offering

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From CONE Midstream last week:

 

HOUSTON and PITTSBURGH, September 24, 2014 – Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NBL), CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) and CONE Midstream Partners LP, a Delaware limited partnership (“CONE Midstream Partners”) formed by CONSOL and Noble Energy, announced today that CONE Midstream Partners has priced its initial public offering of 17,500,000 common units representing limited partner interests at a price to the public of $22.00 per common unit. The common units are scheduled to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange on September 25, 2014 under the ticker symbol “CNNX.” The underwriters of the offering have a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 2,625,000 common units to cover over-allotments, if any.

At the conclusion of the offering, the public will own a 29.4% limited partner interest in CONE Midstream Partners (or a 33.8% limited partner interest if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units). Each of CONSOL and Noble Energy will own a 34.3% limited partner interest in CONE Midstream Partners (or a 32.1% limited partner interest if the underwriters exercise in full their option to purchase additional common units). In addition, CONSOL and Noble Energy will own, through their Marcellus Shale midstream joint venture, CONE Gathering LLC, a 2% general partner interest and the incentive distribution rights in CONE Midstream Partners.

To read more or comment...

Methane emissions from gas, oil decline 12 percent since 2011

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday:

WASHINGTON, September 30, 2014 – Industry is substantially reducing methane emissions from oil and natural gas production and is expected to continue reducing emissions, according to an EPA report released Tuesday. API Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman said U.S. oil and natural gas companies are leading the charge to reduce emissions by making investments in new technology developed by the industry.

“We’re proud to see our industry’s efforts demonstrated in EPA data that show emissions are far lower than EPA projected just a few years ago, even as U.S. production has surged,” Feldman said. “Creating good paying jobs and growing the economy go hand in hand with our efforts to reduce emissions both voluntarily and in compliance with EPA emissions standards that take effect in January.”

According to EPA, reported methane emissions from the petroleum and natural gas systems sector have decreased by 12 percent since 2011, with the largest reductions coming from hydraulically fractured natural gas wells, which have decreased by 73 percent during that period.

“Thanks in large part to innovations like hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, America is leading the world in producing natural gas and reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Feldman said. “Industry will continue to be a leader in environmental stewardship as it maintains our country’s leadership position as the top producer of natural gas.”

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 600 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 20 million Americans.

To read more or comment...

API responds to federal oil-by-rail proposal, submitting comments

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday:

WASHINGTON, September 30, 2014 – API will submit comments to the Department of Transportation today regarding proposed changes to the rules that govern the shipment of crude oil by rail, which API President and CEO Jack Gerard outlined during a conference call with reporters.

“Safety is a core value for America’s oil and natural gas industry, and our goal is always zero incidents,” said Gerard. “Reaching this goal of zero incidents requires a comprehensive approach. We define this as a three-legged stool that focuses on preventing accidents before they happen, mitigating any that occur, and enhancing emergency response.

“API has devoted the bulk of our efforts to the area where we have the most to offer – mitigation. This leg of the stool encompasses proper testing and classification as well as tank car design. As shippers, this is where the oil and natural gas industry can lead the way and make the greatest impact on safety enhancement.

“Our commitment to safety has led us to build tank cars since 2011 to voluntary standards that exceed current requirements, and we support additional upgrades to the tank car fleet that will yield meaningful safety benefits.

“While tank cars are an important part of the comprehensive approach to safety, there are limits to what tank car design can achieve. Getting to zero incidents will take an equal effort to prevent accidents and improve accident response.

“If all stakeholders continue to work from a strong foundation of science and data, I am confident that our joint efforts to better prevent, mitigate and respond to accidents will enhance the safety of shipping crude oil by rail.”

API represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 600 members produce, process, and distribute most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy.
 

To read more or comment...

Magnum Hunter Resources selling non-core Bakken land

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

Texas-based Magnum Hunter Resources is selling off non-core land in Noerth Dakota's Bakken shale.

The deal for $23 million covers land in Divide County, N.D.

Click  here  to see the company's press release.

To read more or comment...

145,000 comments filed on federal rules on oil rail shipments

By Bob Downing Published: October 1, 2014

From ForestEthics, a national eco-group, on Tuesday:

 

145,000+ Comments on Draft Federal Oil Train Regulations Cite Weak Safety Standards, Call for Immediate Ban on Dangerous Tanker Cars

 

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.