First Choice Energy

Thursday, October 10, 2019

ODNR Releases Latest Utica and Marcellus Shale Activity Maps

After 2 Dead Weeks, Permitting Picks Back Up in Utica Shale as Rig Count Drops

WEEK ENDING 10/05/19

New permits issued last week: 10 (Previous week: 0)  +10
Total horizontal permits issued: 3177 (Previous week: 3162 +15
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2707 (Previous week: 2699)  +8
Total horizontal wells producing: 2339 (Previous week: 2320)  +19
Utica rig count: 11 (Previous week: 14)  -3

Saturday, October 5, 2019

USGS Increases Appalachian Basin Natural Gas Estimates, Moves Utica Ahead of Marcellus

From the USGS:
The Marcellus Shale and Point Pleasant-Utica Shale formations of the Appalachian Basin contain an estimated mean of 214 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered, technically recoverable continuous resources of natural gas, according to new USGS assessments.

“Watching our estimates for the Marcellus rise from 2 trillion to 84 trillion to 97 trillion in under 20 years demonstrates the effects American ingenuity and new technology can have,” said USGS Director Jim Reilly. “Knowing where these resources are located and how much exists is crucial to ensuring our nation’s energy independence.” 
Image shows a map of the Eastern United States with the boundaries of the Marcellus Shale superimposed 
The assessment unit map for the Marcellus Shale within the Appalachian Basin. Although it occupies similar areas as the Point Pleasant-Utica Shale, the Marcellus is much younger, having formed in the Devonian age.  (Public domain.) 
The Marcellus, Point Pleasant and Utica are extensive formations that cover parts of Kentucky, Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. 
This is a significant increase from the previous USGS assessments of both formations. In 2011, the USGS estimated a mean of 84 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the Marcellus Shale, and in 2012 the USGS estimated about 38 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the Utica Shale. 
Significant amounts of natural gas have been produced from the Marcellus and Utica Shales since the previous USGS assessments. USGS assessments are for remaining resources and exclude known and produced oil and gas.
Click here to read the whole announcement.

Lordstown Energy Center Honored as POWER Magazine Top Plant

From POWER Magazine:
The cost of fuel is one of the most important factors affecting power plant profitability, but flexibility and efficiency are also vitally important to success. One impressive new plant in Ohio—the Lordstown Energy Center—is positioned to profit from inexpensive gas while utilizing proven technology to economically produce reliable power. The project is a notable POWER Top Plant award winner. 
The power industry has changed dramatically over the past decade. One of the driving forces behind the transformation has been the growth of shale gas production. Shale gas is natural gas—primarily methane—found in shale formations, some of which were formed during the Devonian and Ordovician periods of Earth’s history. 
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the shales were deposited as fine silt and clay particles at the bottom of relatively enclosed bodies of water more than 300 million years ago. At roughly the same time, primitive plants were forming forests on land and the first amphibians were beginning to appear. Some of the methane that formed from the organic matter buried with the sediments escaped into sandy rock layers adjacent to the shales, forming conventional accumulations of natural gas, which are relatively easy to extract. But some of it remained locked in the tight, low-permeability shale layers, becoming shale gas.
Read more by clicking here. 

Ohio Judge Says Chesapeake Acted Legally with Scheme to Lower Royalty Payments

From Law360:
Chesapeake Exploration LLC properly calculated and paid oil and gas royalties to landowners, an Ohio federal judge ruled Monday, granting summary judgment in favor of the oil company in a certified class action that’s dragged on for nearly four years. 
Dale H. Henceroth, Marilyn S. Wendt and eight other landowners filed suit in 2015, alleging the Chesapeake Energy Corp. unit had breached its contracts with them by underpaying them on royalties. Specifically, the landowners said Chesapeake should be paying them royalties based on a higher price associated with the later-enhanced and more expensive gas further down the line. 
But U.S. District Judge Benita Y. Pearson on Monday found that Chesapeake was paying landowners “exactly what the parties negotiated for” in their leases. She granted the company’s motion for summary judgment and denied a competing motion for summary judgment from the plaintiffs. 
“The lease language is plain and unambiguous and the evidentiary record is clear: Chesapeake paid plaintiffs 1/8th of the proceeds it received from the sale of the oil and gas produced and marketed from the leaseholds,” Pearson said.
The landowners' suit is based on the fact that Chesapeake sold the gas to itself (through an affiliate company) at a deflated price, which is the price they paid out royalties on, and then resold the gas at higher prices.  But the leases that Chesapeake drew up were no doubt carefully prepared to allow them to do this, meaning the landowners are unlikely to win the legal battle (although the ruling has been appealed).  Just a note to any landowner out there who is considering signing a lease of any kind: get an attorney to help protect you from predatory practices like this.

Read the rest of the Law360 article by clicking here.

Utica Sees No New Permits for Second Consecutive Week

WEEK ENDING 09/28/19

New permits issued last week: 0 (Previous week: 0)  +-0
Total horizontal permits issued: 3162 (Previous week: 3162 +-0
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2699 (Previous week: 2698)  +1
Total horizontal wells producing: 2320 (Previous week: 2317)  +3
Utica rig count: 14 (Previous week: 14)  +-0

Consumer Group Finds Ohio’s Emissions Have Declined Faster Than the National Average

Despite its high energy demands and a surge in energy production, Ohio’s statewide emissions have fallen by as much as 94 percent since 1990

COLUMBUS, Ohio--()--Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) today released an Ohio emissions brief that looks at key pollutants and the overall environmental improvements seen across the state. The brief offers further support for one of the great untold stories in Ohio and across the country, the United States is leading the world in environmental stewardship and emission reduction.

The brief comes as youth across the country marched in support of a healthier environment, and to seek answers from community leaders, policymakers and adults about what is being done to improve our environment while also meeting today’s growing demand for energy. This brief shows everyone that many of their questions have already been answered by ongoing innovation and technology in the U.S.
CEA’s brief found that even as Ohio increases its energy production and remains one of the nation’s largest energy consumers, emissions of key air pollutants and greenhouse gases have declined significantly across the state.
From 1990 to 2017, Ohio’s emissions of key pollutants have decreased across the board, with:
  • 72 percent reduction in nitrogen oxides (NOx),
  • 94 percent reduction in sulfur dioxide (SO2), and;
  • 66 percent reduction in volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
Additionally, from 1990 to 2016, Ohio’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions declined by 16 percent.
Moreover, while Ohio’s emissions of key pollutants and carbon dioxide were decreasing, the state saw a marked increase in energy production, boosting job creation and economic growth. Ohio production of natural gas increased more than 1,900 percent over the past decade.
“As Ohioans continue to voice their support for creating a healthier environment, and ensuring access to affordable and reliable energy, we are happy that data from the EPA and the WHO demonstrates that Ohioans can simultaneously have a cleaner environment and energy production,” said Chris Ventura, CEA’s Executive Director in Ohio. “This is due in part to the commonsense regulatory policies enacted by our elected officials and the voluntary actions that have been taken by companies across Ohio to the benefit of our communities. We should all be proud that Ohio is one of the leading states in the nation in realizing greater emissions reductions. Now, let’s keep this amazing progress going!”
This brief follows CEA’s Energy Savings Report for Ohio consumers, which found that families, small business and manufacturers across the state saved over $40 billion on their natural gas utility bills over the past decade. This is due to the prolific American Energy Revolution occurring in Southeast Ohio, and similar states across the country.
To view the brief, click here.
About Consumer Energy Alliance
Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) is the leading consumer advocate for energy, bringing together families, farmers, small businesses, distributors, producers, and manufacturers to support America's environmentally sustainable energy future. With more than 550,000 members nationwide, our mission is to help ensure stable prices and energy security for households and businesses across the country. CEA works daily to encourage people across the nation to seek sensible, realistic, and environmentally responsible solutions to meet our energy needs. Learn more at

Friday, September 27, 2019

Ninth Attempt at Anti-Fracking Charter Amendment in Youngstown Dies Before Reaching the Ballot

From the Youngstown Vindicator:
Supporters of an anti-fracking charter amendment, rejected eight times by Youngstown voters since 2013, didn’t submit documentation to put it on the ballot this year and may not do so next year.

Organizers say they’re regrouping after failing to convince city voters that the issue is for their benefit. 
But the future remains murky at best. 
“I really don’t know if we’ll be back in 2020, but we’re definitely not giving up,” said Susie Beiersdorfer, a member of the committee that has supported the ballot issue and has used different names over the years. “We’re active in different ways. There’s a real change in the air with more people waking up and more activists visiting their legislators. We’re working on exposing the injustice and showing how important local control is.” 
While language of the proposal has changed over the years, the charter amendment would have banned fracking in Youngstown and anything related to the extraction of fossil fuels in the city, as well as guarantee people’s right to clean water and air. 
“We are so freakin’ tired,” said Lynn Anderson, another anti-fracking committee member. “We have begged people to help us. It’s horrifying to know all this is happening. I’ve spent so much time going door-to-door getting signatures and doing it with so few people. I haven’t given up, but where are the people standing with me? We have a small group, and we’re not getting help from others. We need people to stand up and get the facts. We want people to join us.”
Click here to continue reading.