Showing posts from January, 2017

Oil Poised to Reach $80

Source: The Energy Report   01/26/2017 View Original Article: Joe McAlinden, founder of McAlinden Research Partners and former chief global strategist with Morgan Stanley Investment Management, outlines the trends for energy and discusses which sectors should see the most growth under the Trump administration. The Energy Report:   Welcome, Joe. What is your outlook for oil? Joe McAlinden: We've been bullish on oil prices and published a piece last April predicting an energy shortage. I continue to think that is where we're headed. There is a self-correcting mechanism in relatively free markets that have been operative in the U.S. As prices fell, producers that are capitalists have cut back production and shut down a lot of drilling activity. We see that in the plunge that we've had in the number of operating rigs and in the number of barrels produced in the U.S. Meanwhile, in less

Kasich Again Calls for Increased Oil and Gas Severance Tax in Latest Budget Plan

From : Gov. John Kasich is trying once again to raise Ohio's tax rate on fracking activity in the state. But his latest budget plan, released Monday, calls for a much higher tax than he's sought in the past.  Kasich's two-year budget plan, unveiled Monday, would charge horizontal drillers in eastern Ohio a severance tax of 6.5 percent for crude oil and natural gas sold at the source -- or $3.25 per $50 barrel of oil.  Natural gas and natural gas liquids that go through processing would be assessed a 4.5 percent tax per thousand cubic feet, which would equal about 16 cents given a spot price of $3.59 in December .  Currently, Ohio charges 20 cents per barrel of oil, while the tax on natural gas is 3 cents per thousand cubic feet.  Conventional drillers in the state would continue to pay the same rates currently in place. We received the following statement from Shawn Bennett, the Executive Vice President of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, in respo

Gulfport Energy Corporation Provides Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2016 Operational Update

Gulfport Energy Corporation (NASDAQ: GPOR ) (“Gulfport” or the “Company”) today provided an operational update for the quarter and year ended December 31, 2016. Key information includes the following: Net production during the fourth quarter of 2016 averaged 787.0 MMcfe per day, a 7% increase over the third quarter of 2016 and a 22% increase versus the fourth quarter of 2015, averaging at the high-end of Gulfport’s previously provided fourth quarter 2016 guidance of 765 MMcfe per day to 790 MMcfe per day. Net production during the full-year of 2016 averaged 719.8 MMcfe per day, a 31% increase over the full-year of 2015. Realized natural gas price, before the impact of derivatives and including transportation costs, averaged $1.85 per Mcf during 2016, a $0.61 per Mcf differential to the average trade month NYMEX settled price, compared to Gulfport’s previously provided full-year of 2016 differential guidance of $0.61 to $0.66 per Mcf below NYMEX settlement prices. Realized oil pri

U.S. Supreme Court Won't Consider Ohio Dormant Mineral Act Case

From Vorys Energy & Environmental Law Blog: Today, in its  Order List , the Supreme Court of the United States denied certiorari in  Jon D. Walker, Jr. v. Patricia J. Shondrick-Nau, Executrix of the Estate of John R. Noon and Successor Trustee of the John R. Noon Trust. Walker  involved interpretation and application of the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act (R.C. § 5301.56) (the “ DMA “), and was most recently decided by the Supreme Court of Ohio.   The Supreme Court of Ohio Decision   In 2012, Walker filed a complaint to have a dormant mineral interest declared abandoned pursuant to the 1989 version of the DMA (the “ 1989 DMA “). Prior to the filing of his complaint, certain lower courts in Ohio had held that the 1989 DMA automatically abandoned dormant mineral interests when the record revealed that none of the six “savings events” occurred from March 22, 1969 to March 22, 1992. In concluding that the dormant mineral interest was not abandoned, the Supreme Court of Ohio held that th

President Trump Puts Energy Plan into Action

From Reuters : U.S. President Donald Trump signed orders on Tuesday smoothing the path for the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines in a move to expand energy infrastructure and roll back key Obama administration environmental actions.  Oil producers in Canada and North Dakota are expected to benefit from a quicker route for crude oil to U.S. Gulf Coast refiners. But going ahead with the pipelines would mark a bitter defeat for Native American tribes and climate activists, who successfully blocked the projects earlier and vowed to fight the decisions through legal action.  Trump campaigned on promises to increase domestic energy production. Before taking office he said the Dakota pipeline should be completed and that he would revive the C$8 billion ($6.1 billion) Keystone XL project, which was rejected in 2015 by then-President Barack Obama. U.S. crude imports have fallen dramatically in recent years as domestic production has boomed, but the world's lar

Rig Count Drops and Permitting Slows in Utica Shale

A week after reporting 13 new permits and a rig count of 24, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources had only 6 new permits and a rig count of 23 on the latest weekly permitting update. Five of the six permits issued went to Antero Resources for Noble County wells, while the one remaining permit was issued to Gulfport Energy for a well in Belmont County. This slower week brings the new cumulative totals to: 2,359 wells permitted, 1,889 wells drilled, and 1,480 wells producing. View the report by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Frack Sands Rebound Predicted Under Trump Administration

Source: The Energy Report   01/19/2017 View Original Article: Fracking is poised to increase under the Trump administration, and with it will come the need for larger quantities of fracking sand. President-elect Donald Trump is widely expected implement pro-energy exploration policies. His " America First Energy Plan " calls for making "American energy dominance a strategic economic and foreign policy goal of the United States," and the unleashing of "America's $50 trillion in untapped shale, oil, and natural gas reserves. . ." Pro-energy policies coupled with rising energy prices point to an increase in fracking. And with the growth of fracking comes the need for fracking sands. Sand is essential to fracking. Bloomberg reports that sand "is a much greater tool in hydraulic fracking than drillers had understood it to be. Ti

Citizen Groups Play Important Role in Protecting Landowner Rights in Shale Plays

by Paul Feezel, Carroll Concerned Citizens Carrollton OH: While some industry funded groups seek to discredit the work of local citizen groups and their roles in the communities where shale gas development occurs, the reality is these groups have become a critical part of information exchange and ultimately industry accountability. Whether a formalized non-profit, a land-owner collaborative, or an informal group, citizen members realize that industry information provides only one side of the story…a corporate profit side. Drillers and industry associations leverage professional marketers and industry funded non-profits to carefully craft messages that accentuate drilling’s financial upside potential while minimizing its downside risks to the environment, land values and local quality-of-life. Their hope is that landowners remain disconnected and act only as individuals rather than groups. This helps them hold down leasing costs, keep problems under wraps, and unfortunately suppor

U.S. Shale Output Runs Counter to OPEC Production Cut Agreement

From MarketWatch: The oil market got a stark reminder Tuesday that rising oil production in the U.S. could upend efforts by major producers to bring global supply and demand for crude back in to balance.  Just ahead of the settlement for oil futures prices CLG7, +0.57% on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Tuesday, the Energy Information Administration released a report on drilling productivity—forecasting a monthly rise of 41,000 barrels a day in February oil production to 4.748 million barrels a day. “That is bearish for oil and a concern for [the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries,” said James Williams, energy economist at WTRG Economics, pointing out that the volume of new oil per rig has climbed because of gains in efficiency. Click here to continue reading. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Utica Shale Permitting Picks Up; Highest Rig Count Since 2015

Utica shale activity looks to be on the increase if the latest weekly update on permitting from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources is any indication. 13 permits are listed on the report for the week of January 8 to January 14, 2017.  Six of those permits were issued for Belmont County wells, four for Noble County, and three for Carroll County. The Utica rig count was back on the rise on this latest report, as well.  It sits at 24, which is the highest rig count we've seen since 2015.  2,353 horizontal permits are now issued, 1,888 wells drilled, and 1,476 wells are producing. Click here to view the report in its entirety. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Rex Energy Announces Two-Year Financial and Operational Plan and Provides Financial Update

Rex Energy Corporation  (Nasdaq:REXX) ("the company") today announced its two-year financial and operational plan and provided a financial update. Highlights: Expect capital spend in 2017 and 2018 to be aligned with cash flow from operations and asset sales Debt-to-EBITDAX reduction of ~50% by end of 2018 driven by significant production growth, improved basis differentials and enhanced price realizations Targeting a two-year compounded annual production growth rate of 10% - 15% by 2018 Exit rate production growth for 2017 of 15% - 20% ( Dec. 2017  vs.  Dec. 2016 ) Expect ~40% differential improvement to NYMEX for natural gas realizations in 2017 and ~15% improvement in 2018 Expect C3+ NGL pricing in 2017 to be 43% - 48% of WTI; 45% - 50% in 2018 Benefit Street Partners LLC  elected into five additional wells for approximately  $15.8 million  for a total capital commitment to date of $135.9 million BP Energy Co.  added to bank group allowing for expanded hedging

01/18/2017 Links of the Day: Gulfport Energy Awards Grants, EPA Approves Wastewater Discharge, and More

Bloomberg:   Meet the Obscure Group Influencing Trump's Energy Policy   -    "An obscure Washington policy group that opposes almost any government aid for renewable energy has emerged as an influential force in shaping Donald Trump’s plans to dismantle Obama administration climate..." Stow Sentry:   Company Seeks to Drill Natural Gas Well   -    "A proposal to drill a natural gas well on private property adjacent to Kimpton Middle School may be in the Board of Education's future to consider. David Beck of Beck Energy in Ravenna told the Board members at their Dec. 5 meeting that he is working with the Armbrusts who own 27 acres at..." The Motley Fool:   Top Gas Stocks to Buy in 2017   -    "Natural gas' growing presence on the world stage demands the attention of investors. But how you buy into the fuel is the important question. Royal Dutch Shell ( NYSE:RDS-A ) ( NYSE:RDS-B ), Enterprise Products Partners ( NYSE:EPD ), and Rice Energy( NYSE

Shale Drillers Allowing Some Leases to Expire in Columbiana County

From Business Journal Daily: A survey of oil and gas leases up for renewal in 2016 across Columbiana County shows that energy companies are still interested in developing this portion of the Utica shale, but not quite as enthusiastically as they were five years ago when these leases were first signed.  According to data provided through the Columbiana County recorder’s office, 535 oil and gas leases were listed as extended during 2016, most of them with Chesapeake Exploration LLC.  During the same period though, 612 leases in Columbiana County were released during the year and allowed to expire, according to county records.  “Lease expirations are happening daily,” observes Alan Wenger, an attorney for Harrington, Hoppe & Mitchell Ltd. who directs the law firm’s oil and gas division. “We’re now approaching the second wave, and a lot of people are watching this.” Read the whole article by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Ohio Anti-Fracking Group Quietly Dismantles After “Disappointing” Study Results

by Jackie Stewart, Energy in Depth An Ohio anti-fracking activist group has gone radio silent and appears to have dismantled after two studies it  coordinated and funded  failed to confirm its anti-fracking narrative. Carroll County, home to the largest number of Utica Shale wells and the first county in Ohio where fracking really started booming, has also been home to  Carroll County Concerned Citizens (CCCC) , a small anti-fracking activist group. Over the past few years, this group (associated with the  Frack Free America National Coalition ), has held monthly meetings and used its website to provide a flurry of misinformation about the oil and gas industry. But most notably, CCCC has been a hub for “volunteer recruitment” for fracking studies. Last year, two of the studies the CCCC participated and funded yielded “ disappointing ” results, as a University of Cincinnati (UC) groundwater fracking study showed “ no evidence for natural gas contamination”   and  another UC frackin

Ohio Governor Kasich Signs Bill Making Illegal Local Fracking Bans Easier to Strike Down

From The legislature just made it harder for anyone to use local ballot issues to fight fracking, thanks to a bill rammed through the legislature, House Bill 463, which Gov. John Kasich signed Wednesday .  That's not the only problem that mars the 67-page Christmas tree, which passed Dec. 8. Reprehensibly, the bill also weakens Ohio's housing discrimination law.  As to the environment, HB 463 takes aim at attempts to propose county charters, or city or village ballot issues, that would ban fracking or any other local initiative that would run counter to statewide law (example: ballot issues to soften marijuana penalties). HB 463 gives county Boards of Elections and the Ohio secretary of state power to decide if a municipal initiative or proposed county charter fails to follow proper procedures for reaching the ballot - or (this is key) tries to claim local control over powers the state reserves for itself. (A 2004 law gives the state sole authority ove

Petrogas Company issues update on its Monroe County Acquisition

Petrogas Company, Inc. ( OTC PINK :  PTCO ) ("Petrogas" or "the Company"), today issued an update regarding its recent acquisition in Monroe County, Ohio. In 2013, one of the largest natural gas reservoirs within the Utica shale formation was discovered in Monroe and Belmont County. Estimates peg the deposits at around 150 billion cubic feet. Those two counties are in what's known as the dry gas window and produce high volumes of pressurized natural gas that need little processing. They are home to Ohio's biggest wells and have emerged as Ohio's drilling hot spot. The discovery quickly led to an acquisition rush in the area which is still ongoing. The Bureau of Land Management is slowly auctioning parcels for drilling, one of which Petrogas purchased last month. According to data from Drilling Edge, natural gas production in 2013 was around 11 million MCF. In 2016 this number increased to approximately 200 million MCF. As natural gas prices re

FERC Allows NEXUS Pipeline to Stick to Proposed Route Through Wayne County

From Gas & Oil: The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has decided against an alternate route for the NEXUS Pipeline that would have moved construction through southern and western Wayne County instead of through Chippewa Township, and the news was bittersweet.  The FERC released the final environmental impact statement, acknowledging, “the projects would result in some adverse environmental impacts; however, these impacts would be reduced to acceptable levels with the implementation of NEXUS’s and Texas Eastern’s proposed mitigation measures and the additional measures recommended by staff in the final EIS.”  The pipeline, if approved, will cut through 6.6 miles of Chippewa Township.  Gary and Deb Adkins’ home is within 100 feet of the proposed pipeline in Chippewa Township, and they have opposed the project. Deb Adkins said she had just heard the news Wednesday, and she and her husband are going to have to look into it further to see what else can be done. Continue th

Ohio Ordered to Let Company Begin Operating Injection Well Tied to 2014 Earthquakes

From The Columbus Dispatch: The pumping of waste from hydraulic fracturing operations into a closed Ohio injection well is expected to resume after a judge's ruling that the state's oil-and-gas regulator failed to consider a new plan after shutting down the well in 2014 because of two small earthquakes nearby.  Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Kimberly Cocroft ordered the state and well operator, American Water Management Services, to submit language for a judgment order to reopen the well in Trumbull County's Weathersfield Township, about 65 miles southeast of Cleveland.  Cocroft's ruling last month said the state had the authority to shut down the well after earthquakes were detected below ground in July and August of 2014. But the ruling said the Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management should have allowed American Water to resume operations after submitting a plan that called for pumping brine at lower pressures and volumes. At least 20 other small seis

Pipeline Opponents Speak Loudly, But Do They Have a Better Energy Solution?

From Investor's Business Daily: Another day, another pipeline protest by "keep it in the ground" activists.  On Dec. 8, a dozen people swarmed a construction site near the Hudson River in an attempt to halt construction of Spectra Energy's AIM pipeline, which is designed to carry natural gas from New Jersey to Massachusetts. The protesters, who call themselves the HudsonStand12, were arrested and charged with criminal trespass and resisting arrest by authorities in Cortlandt, New York .  Those arrests come on the heels of the months-long protests against the Dakota Access oil pipeline project in North Dakota, which, of course, followed the brouhaha over the Keystone XL pipeline.  Climate activists are now hoping to block oil and gas pipeline projects across the country due to their claim that we must keep all hydrocarbons in the ground to avert catastrophic climate change. Those same activists repeatedly claim we don't need fossil fuels because we can rel

Utica Rig Count Holds at 23 in First Permitting Report of 2017

The first weekly permitting report from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources in 2017 shows that it was a slow week of activity. Only one new permit was issued during the week of January 1 to January 7.  It went to Eclipse Resources for the Duane Weisend East 8H well in Noble County. While permitting was slow, the Utica rig count remained at 23 for the second straight week - which means that the first week of 2017 already matched the highest rig count of all 2016.  2,343 permits are now issued, 1,883 wells have been drilled, and 1,472 wells are producing. Click here to view the whole report. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

ODNR Publishes January 2017 Shale Activity Maps

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ODNR Says Regulations to Prevent Earthquakes Are Working in Ohio

From the Youngstown Vindicator: In the five years since a magnitude-4.0 injection well- induced earthquake jolted the Mahoning Valley, Ohio has become a leader in seismic monitoring, state regulatory officials say.  That memorable, locally unprecedented earthquake rattled the Valley shortly after 3 p.m. Dec. 31, 2011.  It was one of 13 tremors between March 17, 2011, and Jan. 13, 2012, which the Ohio Department of Natural Resources determined were caused by a 9,000-foot-deep D&L Energy Inc. injection well on Ohio Works Drive in Youngstown, which was used for brine disposal.  Brine is the salty, chemical-laden water that returns to the surface after the hydraulic-fracturing (fracking) process that unlocks natural gas and oil deep underground.  Before that series of Youngstown earthquakes began, no quakes centered in the Mahoning Valley had ever been recorded.  “I believe we’ve had no felt [earthquake] events in [Ohio] injection wells since the Youngstown event,” of Dec.

What Changes Will Donald Trump's Energy Policy Bring?

From Forbes: President-elect Donald Trump intends to hit the ground running on energy and environment policy. Trump already has an expert team in place drafting important policy changes from the Obama administration. Here are 10 likely changes that will impact energy production, energy use, and the U.S. economy.  1. Goodbye to the Clean Power Plan. The EPA’s Clean Power Plan was political poison for Democrats in the November elections. In 14 Senate races highlighted before the elections by the liberal website Mother Jones as being especially important in the global warming debate, 11 were won by candidates opposing the Clean Power Plan. The Clean Power Plan was decisively damaging to Hillary Clinton in Great Lakes battleground states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin. The American public supports government taking some steps to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions that cause some global warming, but Donald Trump realized expensive, highly partisan, top-down restri

Analyst Says Utica Shale a Key Consideration for Potential Chesapeake Investors

From Seeking Alpha: Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE: CHK ) had a massive 1.1 million net acre position in the Utica Shale as of its October 2016 update. In light of its 2015 midstream agreement, rising domestic gas prices, and additional takeaway capacity coming online in 2017, this is a key asset to watch when considering investing in Chesapeake Energy Corporation.  Investors should note that Chesapeake Energy did sell off 37,000 net acres in the Utica, along with 22 producing wells and five DUCs (drilled but uncompleted wells) in Q4. During the first half of 2016, those producing wells pumped out an average of 24 MMcf/d of natural gas. That acreage was centered around Columbiana County in NE Ohio and Beaver County in Western Pennsylvania, outside of Chesapeake's core Utica focus in Eastern Ohio. During the third quarter of this year, Chesapeake Energy Corporation pumped out 127,000 BOE/d net from the Utica. That was down 10,000 BOE/d from Q2 2016 but up 21,000 BOE/d ve

Rig Count Up Again on ODNR's Last Weekly Report of 2016

The weekly Utica shale permitting report from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources covering the week of December 25 to December 31, 2016 shows five new permits being issued as the Utica rig count climbed by one. Four of the five new permits listed on the report are for sites in Guernsey County, while the remaining permit was for Monroe County.  All five permits were issued to Eclipse Resources. The Utica rig count rose to 23, matching the highest level it had reached in 2016.  2,342 permits have now been issued, with 1,882 wells drilled and 1,472 wells producing. View the entire report by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Kasich Vetoes Legislation Expanding Tax Exemption for Oil and Gas Drillers

From NGI: Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Tuesday vetoed legislation that would have expanded a sales tax exemption for oil and natural gas producers, saying it would have cost the state too much and unfairly favored the industry.  Using his line-item veto power, the Republican governor struck down the provision in SB 235, lame-duck legislation that also changes unemployment compensation law, among other things. The veto stops the Republican-controlled legislature's efforts to expand a sales tax exemption on equipment used "directly" in producing oil and gas to cover all production-related purchases.  "The exemption in this item goes well beyond the direct use exemption for exploration and production and would result in a situation where oil and gas companies would be exempt from sales tax on almost everything they purchase," Kasich said in his veto message. "This new, broadened exemption from the sales tax would create future annual revenue losses to the s

EPA’s Final Report on Fracking and Groundwater: Ten Things to Know

by Seth Whitehead, Energy in Depth A thorough review of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 666-page  final drinking water report  further solidifies what EID  reported  last week: the substance of the report — its actual data —  reinforces  the 2015  draft report ’s topline conclusion that there was no evidence of “widespread, systemic impacts” from fracking. EPA, of course, opted to delete the latter language from its final report. But comments by EPA Deputy Assistant Administrator Thomas Burke reveal that remains EPA’s final conclusion. For instance, he recently told  CBS This Morning  that  “the overall incidence of impacts is low.” Of course, there is absolutely no difference between saying the “the overall incidence of impacts is low” and there are “no widespread, systemic impacts.” But unfortunately that fact was lost on much of the media, leading to several misleading headlines, including: The New York Times: “ Reversing Course, E.P.A. Says Fracking Can