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Read the whole article by clicking here.Ron's Workingman's Store had been a small, durable business here for nearly 75 years, serving eastern Ohio's industrial workers. And then Chesapeake Energy Corp. moved in across the street last year, as the Oklahoma firm made its foray into the Utica Shale gas development."We created a great friendship, and a lot of their subcontractors came over here," said the store's purchasing manager, Lisa Nicodemo. Sales of fire-retardant clothing used in drilling operations spiked, along with business at the company's companion store, Wilkof Industrial Supply, handling industrial equipment and tools."Two years ago, we were running this place with four people. Now we're up to nine," said Nicodemo, whose company has added a mobile store that goes to drilling sites. "This is just the beginning."Indeed, tapping into the Utica Shale resource is just beginning. Oil and gas companies have secured 405 permits, nearly all of them since the beginning of last year, and have drilled 171 exploratory wells. The U.S. Geological Survey, in its first estimate of the Utica Shale this month, pronounced it a potential gold mine, with 38 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable natural gas, 940 million barrels of oil and 208 million barrels of natural gas liquids.But moving the Utica's production -- in particular, the valuable natural gas liquids -- into markets has hit a bottleneck with gas prices stubbornly low. In June, 24 horizontal wells were drilled. In September, the number had dropped to three."These companies are very anxious to get going," said Tom Stewart, executive vice president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association. "But the lack of adequate midstream capacity is a throttle on drilling activity," he added, citing the lack of infrastructure, notably the processing facilities required to separate ethane and other gas liquids from pipeline gas, so that both can be sold.
For comparison, here are some of the numbers of Chesapeake wells (excerpt taken from the September issue of the Carroll County Energy News):Utica Shale
- Gulfport's Ryser 1-25H tested at a peak rate of 1,488 barrels of condensate per day, 5.9 million cubic feet ("MMCF") per day of natural gas, and 649 barrels of natural gas liquids ("NGLs") per day assuming full ethane recovery and a natural gas shrink of 21%, or 2,914 barrels of oil equivalent ("BOE") per day.
- Gulfport's Groh 1-12H tested at a peak rate of 1,186 barrels of condensate per day, 2.8 MMCF per day of natural gas, and 367 barrels of NGLs per day assuming full ethane recovery and a natural gas shrink of 18%, or 1,935 BOE per day.
The Bailey well boasted daily production of 205 barrels of oil, 270 barrels of gas liquids, and 5.7 million cubic feet of natural gas - equivalent to 1,420 barrels of oil per day. The Snoddy well produced 320 barrels of oil, 250 barrels of gas liquids, and 4.2 million cubic feet of gas, for an oil equivalent of 1,260 barrels. Meanwhile, the Brown well was good for 8.7 million cubic feet of natural gas daily, with no liquid production. That is the equivalent of 1,445 barrels of oil.And some of the top performers (taken from the November issue of the Carroll County Energy News):
The Buell well produced 9.5 million cubic feet of natural gas per day and 1,425 barrels per day of natural gas liquids and oil, or 3,010 barrels of oil equivalent per day, at its peak.
In August the Buell well was surpassed by Gulfport Energy’s Wagner well - also in Harrison County - which produced 17.1 million cubic feet (“MMCF”) of natural gas per day, 432 barrels of condensate per day and 1,881 barrels of natural gas liquids per day assuming full ethane recovery and a natural gas shrink of 18%, or 4,650 barrels of oil equivalent per a day.
Now a new Gulfport well has ascended to the top spot. The Shugert well, located in the Egypt Valley area of Belmont County, has produced 20.0 million cubic feet per day of natural gas, 144 barrels of condensate per day, and 2,002 barrels of natural gas liquids per day assuming full ethane recovery and a natural gas shrink of 17%, or 4,913 barrels of oil equivalent ("BOE") per day.So the Ryser and Groh wells fall between those two examples. Encouraging early production, although more and more questions are being raised about how quickly the production will decline in the Utica shale.
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Local leaders are set to give consideration to the influence oil and gas drilling could have on Coshocton County.
The Coshocton Port Authority and the Ohio State University Extension Office are hosting a strategic planning session concerning the impending Utica Shale boom projected for the area. The meeting will be 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Frontier Power Community Room.
Port Authority Executive Director Dorothy Skowrunski said organizers expect about 40 to 50 people to attend from various sectors across the community as invited by the local Community Development Council. The initiative is being funded by $3,000 in Coshocton County Community Economic Development Plan funds.Read the rest of the article here.
Read the rest of the article here.This was his advice to the hundreds of millions of Americans that use their cars to commute to work: "If you carpooled [six miles per day], you'd have about three pounds of CO2 left in your daily ration -- enough to run a highly efficient refrigerator. Forget your computer, your TV, your stereo, your stove, your dishwasher, your water heater, your microwave, your water pump, your clock. Forget your light bulbs, compact fluorescent or not."It gets worse. This the alternate food reality McKibben wants for America: "Local, labor-intensive, low-input agriculture." And this is how he sells it: "You'll be standing guard over your vegetable path with your shotgun, warding off the marauding gang that's after your carrots." Yes, seriously: A man that has heavy sway in the Obama White House wants you to drop that grocery bag and go load up on bullets and carrot seeds.According to McKibben's twisted math, the poorer we are, the better for the planet, because "one-seventieth the income means one-seventieth the damage to the planet." And he doesn't just want to shrink our incomes. He's also looking to shrink the size of human civilization overall. As he's put it, his environmental vision means "the human population would need to get gradually smaller."
Read the rest of the article, including the results from those polled about fracking's environmental impacts, by clicking here.With the presidential campaign in its final days each candidate’s policies are under constant review. While every individual American has his or her own set of priorities as to which policies contribute most to their support of one candidate over another, Americans as a whole seem to be placing higher importance on energy policy (with 77% rating it either very important or important) than on its frequent sparring partner, environmental policy (67%); in fact, among the policy areas tested, environmental policy appears to be the least influential over Americans’ likely presidential choice.This is not to say that environmental policy is unimportant to voters; rather, all policy types measured are considered either very important or important by strong majorities of Americans, and it is simply influencing a smaller majority than other policy areas; top influencers include economic/budget (88%), tax (86%), jobs (86) and healthcare (85%) policies.
Logic and common sense would engender unprecedented public, political and even environmentalist support for hydraulic fracturing and expanded oil and gas production. Indeed, that is Governor Romney’s perspective and policy. Unfortunately, Team Obama remains largely opposed to domestic drilling, fixated on “renewable” energy, despite having already wasted some $97 billion on wind, solar and algae projects – and poised to unleash a boxcar of new EPA and BLM rules designed to usurp state control and restrict or hyper-regulate fracking on federal, state and private lands alike, win or lose on November 6.Read the rest of the article here.Team Obama justifies its stance by citing public anxiety over fracking. It fails to mention that this anxiety has been nurtured and orchestrated by a host of environmental pressure groups whose existence, monetary sustenance and political power depend on a steady stream of new eco-hobgoblins. Their fractured fairy tales about this game-changing energy technology would be as funny as the Rocky and Bullwinkle tales, if the economic, employment, national security and environmental consequences weren’t so serious.Hydraulic fracturing devastates their mantra that we are running out of oil and gas. It annihilates their incessant assertions that hydrocarbons are the energy of the past, and renewables are the future. In reality, wind and solar cannot live with cheap natural gas (because they cannot possibly compete with it) and cannot live without it (because they only work 20% of the time and need gas as constant backup power).
Academy Award winning director and actor Robert Redford hopes that more people will turn their attention to one of the most contentious environmental issues of our time—fracking. Fracking is the process of injecting millions of gallons of chemically laced fluids into underground rock formations to release natural gas or oil. To that end, this summer he taped a series of ads on the issue.
As I travel around Central Ohio talking to families and small business owners, I hear three common concerns: the increasing cost of doing business or making ends meet, the high number of unemployed workers, and the troubled economy. There are no “silver bullets” to solving these issues, but in Ohio, the Utica Shale Reserve is providing unmatched opportunities for families and businesses. It’s creating jobs and helping our state’s unemployment rateremain below the national average, bringing an estimated increase of $12.3 billion in gross state product into Ohio’s economy, and enhancing Ohio’s reputation as a great place to do business.Read the rest of Congressman Tiberi's editorial here.
Read the entire article here.The fact revealed during the seminar is that more than 40 drilling operations are already extracting minerals from beneath Mill Creek Park. All were hydraulically fractured. Yet, nary a soul has even noticed because the drilling operations have left no environmental footprint on park land.The fiction, therefore, is that a drilling operation would disturb, even temporarily, pristine meadows, hiking trails, bodies of water and other Mill Creek Park treasures.All 40-some drills were erected off parkland, then horizontally drilled to release the minerals under the surface.
Of course, shale development is a big reason for that growth. Read the rest of the article here.Standing outside the Lemon Grove Café downtown, Frank Desoer, a journalist with CBC Radio-Canada in Montreal, noted the venue did not exist when he visited the city four years ago. “You can feel the difference. The atmosphere is different,” Desoer remarked.Desoer is just one of the many out-of-town – and even out-of--country – journalists to have discovered the Mahoning Valley. A Swiss TV crew has been shooting interviews here for several days, for example, and a crew from CBS was recording efforts Tuesday by the Mahoning County Democratic Party to transport county residents to the board of elections to cast their ballots.Tony Paglia, vice president for government and media affairs with the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber, said the chamber lhas recently worked with CNBC, PBS News Hour, Huffington Post and the Associated Press as well as news outlets from Germany and Japan.“The pace of inquiries has been unbelievable the entire year, but has picked up exponentially in the last month or so,” he said. “Youngstown-Warren is on the map around the world, first because this once-depressed area is actually outpacing much of the nation in growth -- that’s always a good story -- and second because we are in the swing state of Ohio.”
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Read the rest of the article by clicking here.Following a suspension of council’s rules for three readings, members voted 6-0 to approve an emergency ordinance to grant Select Energy Services, a Texas-based company that provides well-site services for the oil and gas industry, a 50 percent income-tax break for the next three years, beginning Jan. 1.Councilman John Zucal, Salary Committee chairman, made the motion to suspend the rules for three readings, and the motion passed unanimously, clearing the way for passage. His committee met prior to council’s last regular meeting and sponsored the legislation, which was given a first reading Monday night.The only public discussion of the issue prior to its passage was a request for approval by Mayor Michael Taylor, read in his absence by Service Director Jim Zucal, that stated: “Select Energy’s new jobs will be a great benefit for the city and area as a whole.”Taylor previously had informed council members that SES officials are looking at a site on the city’0s west end for its servicing location, and had estimated they will create in excess of 100 jobs working out of the location.Company officials had told the committee that New Philadelphia is their preferred site location because of the high visibility and the easy access from Interstate 77, because they are primarily in the water (transport) industry, Zucal had said.
Read more about the processes being developed by clicking here.But given that we already have the infrastructure in place and it’s far cleaner than any of its conventional alternatives, it would seem to be the way to go for the next decade or so for home heating, power generation, and possibly even transportation fuel. That is, if we can get it out of the ground without killing ourselves in the process.Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking does not meet that standard today. When I wrote about this as part of theenergy pro and con series, I said, “As far as fracking is concerned, considering that there is already lots of gas available right now, there is no reason (other than greed) to be in a hurry to develop shale gas. Instead, we should take whatever time is necessary to develop a safer, more responsible way to access that gas, while investing heavily in more sustainable sources that will ultimately obviate the need for it.”Well, it seems that the folks in the industry been listening to me after all (and here I was thinking I was wasting my time).A number of recent developments by each of the top three natural gas producers show that they have indeed been working to develop cleaner safer methods of extracting the gas from beneath the earth.
Read the rest of the article here.Got milk? Maybe not for long. According to research from Penn State University, fracking has been found to reduce dairy production.The university researchers set out to uncover how fracking in Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale region is affecting dairy farming, the state’s top agricultural sector. The researchers examined dairy cow numbers, milk production and fracking activity among various counties in Pennsylvania between 2007 and 2010. They found that counties with 150 or more Marcellus Shale wells saw a 19 percent decrease in dairy cows, while counties with no wells saw only a 1.2 percent decrease. In a similar fashion, milk production in these counties with 150 or more wells declined by an average of 18.5 percent, while counties with no wells had about a 1 percent decline.This research seems to challenge the popular narrative that farmers use the money they receive from fracking companies through leasing their land to improve their farms. The researchers note that additional research is needed to figure out the exact cause of the decrease of dairy production. One researcher wondered whether farmers were taking the money they received from their leases and going into a new occupation, or if they are being forced out of farming due to fracking’s environmental effects or a decrease in their farm’s marketability.
Read the entire article here.An oil boom is coming to Carroll County in the hills of Appalachia, in eastern Ohio. Much of this region sits atop a geologic formation called the Utica Shale. In a new report, the U.S. Geology Survey estimates the Utica contains nearly a billion barrels of crude oil.
Some of the residents who live within the Brinker Storage Field in Columbiana County have reached an agreement with the parent company of Columbia Gas about deep mineral rights.
The company offered a group that had elected not to sue NiSource, the parent company of Columbia, a 15 percent royalty on oil and gas production, said state Rep. Craig Newbold, R-1st, who helped facilitate the deal.
Newbold, of Columbiana, met with both residents and NiSource separately to discuss the situation. NiSource has signed an agreement with Hilcorp, a Houston-based oil and gas company, to develop oil and gas in the storage field.
“I think both groups were willing to compromise,” he said. “The agreement the residents got was a little above their expectations.”
Read the rest of the story here.The properties had been subject to decades-old storage leases, which meant no lease bonus and royalties of just $200 a year if gas was being stored under their property — and nothing if it wasn’t.
Pavillion, Wyoming — population 231 — has become the epicenter of the fracking debate.Read the rest of the article here.In December, EPA tests revealed the presence of "synthetic chemicals, like glycols and alcohols consistent with gas production and hydraulic fracturing fluids, benzene concentrations well above Safe Drinking Water Act standards and high methane levels."More recently, the agency announced new USGS test results were consistent with its December results that fracking likely contaminated groundwater there.Encana, the company behind the fracking in Pavillion, has said the tests contain flaws.But for residents in the area, it's all a bunch of noise."I think it's all a money game," Jana Peterson, who manages the Buckaroo Bar on Center Street, told us by phone recently. "If people want to get an outrageous amount of money for their farms…the squeaky wheel gets the oil.""This community, for 50 years or more, it's always had shi**y water."