Showing posts from May, 2017

ODNR Publishes Shale Activity Maps Updated for May 2017

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Cleveland State University Report Finds Utica Shale Investment Has Surpassed $50 Billion

by Jackie Stewart, Energy in Depth A new Cleveland State University (CSU) report entitled “ Shale Investment Dashboard in Ohio ”  finds total  Utica Shale investment topped $50.4 billion from 2011 to the summer of 2016 . That total includes $38.8 billion in upstream investment by oil and gas operating companies, $8.1 billion in midstream projects and $3.3 billion in downstream investment during that timespan. Remarkably, these figures could prove to be conservative, as several recent and/or relevant projects were not included in the report. Researchers from CSU and Youngstown State University arrived at their findings by using industry interviews and publically available data prepared for  JobsOhio,  a private, nonprofit corporation that promotes job creation and economic development for Ohio. The methodology for CSU’s upstream investment estimate focused on one-time land investments, drilling, roads and gathering lines, the cost of storage, processing and disposal of produced

Utica Shale in Ohio Sees No New Permits Last Week

New permits issued last week:   0   (Previous week:  10 )  -10 Total horizontal permits issued:  2515   (Previous week:  2515 )  +-0 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2008   (Previous week:  2005 )  +3 Total horizontal wells producing:  1561   (Previous week:  1558 )  +3 Utica rig count:  22   (Previous week:  24 )   -2 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Letter to the Editor: Geologist Says Rover Pipeline Problems Are Common and Being Handled Properly

Rover’s Focus is Rightly on Containment, Working with Authorities by Bill Godsey Regarding the Rover Pipeline’s recent release of drilling fluid in Ohio, I would argue that these occurrences – which are fairly common among the industry – are being properly addressed. It’s important for open communications among state and federal regulators and private companies like Rover to continue. Containment is appropriately the focus of those involved. It’s expected that drilling fluid can and will rise through naturally occurring, pre-existing cracks I n the soil during horizontal directional drilling (HDD), which is considered an industry best-practice for installing pipe under wetlands and other sensitive areas. These “inadvertent returns” are common during the HDD process, and do not pose any long-term threats to the environment. Further, Rover included a comprehensive plan to address any such occurrence in its permit application, approved by FERC, to build the pipeline. Rover is not

Rover Pipeline Faces More Scrutiny from Ohio EPA Thanks to Stormwater Overflow

From The Columbus Dispatch: The Rover pipeline is in trouble again, this time for storm water overflows on farm fields along its construction route.  In a statement released Friday, Rover Pipeline officials responded to complaints from Ohio farmers regarding overflows that the company said are caused by recent rainfalls. Heavy rain has caused pipeline trenches and work spaces to fill with water and spill onto fields.  Texas-based Energy Transfer, which is building the $4.2 billion underground pipeline route, said it is working with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Energy Regulatory Agency, as well as the farmers, to remove the water.  “Rainfall in Ohio this spring has not been unprecedented,” Ohio EPA spokesman James Lee said in an email statement. “Had Rover better planned their storm water management, they would have been aware that rain is common in Ohio during the months of April and May.”  This isn’t the first time Rover has had to apologize for

May 31 Event in Jefferson County Promises Update on Area Oil and Gas Activity

From the Weirton Daily Times: Area residents will have the opportunity to hear an update on the status of the oil and gas industry in Jefferson County on May 31. That’s when the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the Jefferson County Port Authority, will present a panel discussion and luncheon focusing on developments in the area.  Sponsored by Ascent Resources, the presentation will run from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Hellenic Hall, 300 S. Fourth St. Topics include the state of the industry in and around Jefferson County, permits, production, pipelines, infrastructure, investment and more.  Speakers will include Amanda Finn, government relations manager for Ascent; Mike Chadsey, director of public relations for the Ohio Oil and Gas Association; Jimmy Stewart, president of the Ohio Gas Association; and Jackie Stewart, state director for Energy in Depth. A question-and-answer session will be included. Read more by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and

State Historic Preservation Office Says Rover Pipeline Owes it $1.5 Million

From the Canton Repository: The Rover Pipeline hasn’t honored an agreement to pay for harm the project does to historic properties, according to the State Historic Preservation Office.  The dispute surfaced a week after state environmental regulators proposed penalizing Rover for construction mishaps and questioned whether the project is taking Ohio seriously as it rushes to finish the $4.2 billion natural gas pipeline.  In February, Rover agreed to pay the State Historic Preservation Office $1.5 million a year for five years. The money will fund statewide education for historic preservation.  Rover was supposed to make the first payment by March 1, but the bill remains unpaid, despite repeated contacts between the State Historic Preservation Office and Rover, according to an April 28 letter from the preservation office to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The letter was filed Friday on the FERC online docketing system. Energy Transfer, which is building the Rover pip

Utica Shale Goes Over 2,000 Wells Drilled; Rig Count Rises Again

New permits issued last week:   10   (Previous week:  8 )  +2 Total horizontal permits issued:  2515   (Previous week:  2506 )  +9 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2005   (Previous week:  1990 )  +15 Total horizontal wells producing:  1558   (Previous week:  1549 )  +9 Utica rig count:  24   (Previous week:  23 )   +1 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

NEXUS Gas Transmission Donates $50,000 For Scholarship to Stark State

From Columbus Monthly: NEXUS Gas Transmission has presented Stark State College with a $50,000 scholarship donation.  According to a news release, Stark State is located near the proposed NEXUS gas pipeline route and offers relevant training for many careers in the oil and gas industry. As indicated by the college, the one-time donation will be used to support industry related programs, scholarships or training facility improvement for students pursuing certification and training to work in the oil and gas industry.  We are grateful for this donation and the ability to use it to directly support hands-on training activities related to OSHA Safety Classes, Environmental Compliance Sampling of soils, water and air, and Department of Transportation (DOT)-required Operator Qualification training,” said Stark State College President Para M. Jones in a news release. “These skills and certifications are critical components of the labor force needs related to gas, water and other infras

OPEC Asks for Help in Balancing Oil Market

From CNN Money: OPEC has asked a favor of other major producers: Please stop pumping so much and help us balance the market.  The unusual plea was issued Thursday in the cartel's closely-watched monthly report, which found that global markets are still suffering from too much supply. The report said that balancing the market would "require the collective efforts of all oil producers" and should be done "not only for the benefit of the individual countries, but also for the general prosperity of the world economy."  OPEC said that one producer in particular is to blame: The U.S., where shale producers have continued to ramp up their drilling despite lower crude prices. Continue reading this article by clicking here. Meanwhile, a Forbes article says that U.S. shale drillers still haven't won their battle with OPEC: More than 200 U.S. energy companies filing for bankruptcy in less than 2 years; A commodity price about half of what it was 3 ye

CORN Sues to Try and Block the NEXUS Pipeline

From US News: More than 60 property owners in northeast Ohio are asking a federal court to block a proposed high-pressure natural gas pipeline. Organizers of the Coalition to Reroute Nexus say a suit filed Friday in U.S. district court charges that the project violates the owners' due process rights, misuses eminent domain to take property, and jeopardizes their safety. It seeks injunctions against the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and Nexus Gas Transmission. "This complaint has been a long time in development," said Paul Gierosky, a co-founder of the group. "Our every experience in dealing with FERC and Nexus has been documented and will be brought to bear in this case." The lawsuit contends that the federal commission and used false and misleading information designed to trick property owners into waiving their constitutional rights. It urges the court to enjoin FERC from issuing a certificate to Nexus for the pipeline. Read more by clicking here.

Youngstown Anti-Drillers Set For Yet Another Attempt at Fracking Ban

From Natural Gas Now: The Marxist CELDF is making yet another run at a “community rights” initiative in Youngstown, Ohio under the cover of fracking opposition. It seeks anarchy.  A nation without laws is not a nation.  Virulent anti-drillers in Youngstown, OH have now tried six times to pass a so-called Community Bill of Rights ballot measure–and have failed all six times, the most recent last November . The local yokels are pawns, useful idiots, for an ultra-radical group from Pennsylvania called the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). The CELDF is behind dozens of such efforts, none of which has been successful. The CELDF is also behind a number of bizarre lawsuits — like the one claiming that an ecosystem is a “person” with rights .  The CELDF has the local anti yokels in Youngstown amped up again — circulating a seventh petition for a ballot measure. But this time is different. In addition to the usual no fracking, no pipelines pablum, this petition has la

Summer Savings and Huge Air Quality Improvements On Tap For Ohio — Thanks to Fracking

by Jackie Stewart, Energy in Depth From northeast Ohio to southwest Ohio, increased use of natural gas is proving a major benefit to consumers, businesses, taxpayers and — most importantly — the environment. Over the past two weeks, news has broke that three major Ohio job creators —  MillerCoors Brewing ,  Wright Patterson Air Force Base  and  Cleveland Thermal  — have invested more than $34 million combined in converting their boilers to natural gas. By doing so, 94 buildings in downtown Cleveland will be heated by shale gas and Cincinnati motorists are expected to save $44 million in fuel costs. And for the first time in 10 years, southwest Ohio will be in attainment of air quality standards, all thanks to fracking. In northeast Ohio, the  Cleveland Plain Dealer  reports that Cleveland Thermal, which has been supplying  thermal heating  and  district cooling  to Cleveland since 1894, has converted 100 percent to natural gas. Essentially the city of Cleveland has gone from usi

Utica Shale Goes Over 2,500 Wells Permitted

New permits issued last week:   8   (Previous week:  14 )  -6 Total horizontal permits issued:  2506   (Previous week:  2499 )  +6 Total horizontal wells drilled:  1990   (Previous week:  1982 )  +8 Total horizontal wells producing:  1549   (Previous week:  1551 )  -2 Utica rig count:  23   (Previous week:  22 )   +1 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Rover Pipeline's Importance Seen in Impact on Gas Prices

From Bloomberg: Some of this year’s biggest gyrations in U.S. natural gas prices can be chalked up to a single pipeline.  Energy Transfer Partners LP’s $4.2 billion Rover line, scheduled to begin partial service in July, will be one of the biggest links from the Marcellus and Utica shale basins in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio -- America’s most prolific gas production region -- to the Midwest and Canada. Gas futures surged to a 14-week high on May 10 after a regulatory setback prompted speculation that the project would be delayed, keeping supplies from reaching those markets.  For a gas market that’s been weighed down by a stubborn supply glut for most of 2017, the timing of the Rover pipeline is critical. An on-time startup would derail progress in whittling down the surplus, unleashing more of the fuel even as hot weather boosts demand from power plants and exports to Mexico and overseas buyers climb. A delay, meanwhile, would keep a lid on gas output from eastern U.

Energy Transfer Says Ohio EPA Has Not Issued Fines for Rover Pipeline Mishaps

From NGI: FERC's actions in response to the Tuscarawas River HDD spill came just days after a May 5 letter from Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (Ohio EPA) Director Craig Butler asking for FERC’s help in responding to "numerous inadvertent returns of bentonite slurry at a number of locations throughout" the state, including the 2 million gallon Tuscarawas River spill, which affected "a high-quality Category 3 wetland."  Butler told Acting FERC Chairman Cheryl LaFleur that Rover has "taken the position that Ohio has no authority to enforce violations of its federally delegated state water pollution control statutes, water quality standards or air pollution control statutes...Ohio EPA strongly disagrees with Rover's position."  Butler added, "In light of Rover's restarting drilling operations today and Rover's position that the state is without any authority to address violations of environmental laws, we are asking FERC to re

Rex Energy Plans a Busy Year in Carroll County

From the Canton Repository: Rex Energy will soon be busy in Carroll County, where it plans to drill 12 Utica Shale wells this year.  The State College, Pa.-based company outlined its expanded drilling program during a conference call with investors Wednesday.  Rex had planned to drill five wells in Carroll, but a new financing agreement will allow the company to accelerate its plans.  That means drilling seven more wells in Carroll from the existing Jenkins and Goebeler pads, where Rex has seen strong production of condensate, a petroleum liquid that is lighter than oil but heavier than natural gas. Click here to read more. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

05/11/17 Links of the Day: More 1st Quarter Reports, Green to Sue in Effort to Stop Nexus, and More

Energy in Depth:   Inflammatory Infant Mortality Study a Prime Example of Flawed 'Pay to Play' Science   -    "An inflammatory new study claiming fracking “kills babies” was published last week by Scientific Research Publishing (SCIRP). The study received zero mainstream media attention, which probably has something to do with its numerous glaring flaws. But it also points to a wider problem – that of subpar studies appearing in what are known as “pay-to-play” open-access journals such as..." Bloomberg:   Oil's OPEC-Driven Gain Wiped Out as Shale Boom Offsets Cuts   -    "The oil rally following OPEC’s deal has disappeared. Futures on both sides of the Atlantic dropped to their lowest since late November on growing signs that the group’s production cuts are failing to clear a surplus of crude. Oil stocks felt the pinch, with the S&P Oil & Gas Exploration and Production Index slumping as much as 4.9 percent..." Energy & Environmental L

Rover Pipeline Recklessness Prompts FERC to Slow Project

From the Washington Post: The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has curtailed work on a natural-gas pipeline in Ohio after the owner, Energy Transfer Partners, reported 18 leaks and spilled more than 2 million gallons of drilling materials.  The pipeline regulator blocked Energy Transfer Partners, which also built the controversial Dakota Access pipeline, from starting horizontal drilling in eight areas where drilling has not yet begun. In other areas, where the company has already begun horizontal drilling, the FERC said drilling could continue.  The FERC also ordered the company to double the number of environmental inspectors and to preserve documents the commission wants to examine as it investigates the spills.  The biggest spill, in a pristine wetland along the Tuscarawas River about 50 miles south of Akron, covered 6.5 acres, the commission said, “coating wetland soils and vegetation with bentonite clay and bore-hole cuttings.” A video provided by the Ohio Environ

Carrizo Follows Other Drillers Who Are Looking to Sell Off Utica and Marcellus Shale Assets

From the first quarter earnings call with Carrizo Oil and Gas: Brian Corales - Howard Weil   Good morning, guys. Just a couple for you. The increased lay-in budget, was that partly due to, I guess, the Eagle Ford acreage you added in the quarter? And what acreage, I guess, are you targeting? It sounds like you have something pinpointed now.   S.P. Johnson - Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc.   We have acquired acreage in the Eagle Ford and the Permian. Generally it's bolt-on acreage to the acreage we already have. Nearly all of it adjoins something we're already operating.   Brian Corales - Howard Weil   Okay. And in Appalachia, I'm assuming you're looking to sell both assets. And is there a data room open, or is this kind of see what's out there?   S.P. Johnson - Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc.   We have engaged bankers on both of them and are doing teasers followed by data rooms.   Brian Corales - Howard Weil   And any kind of rough estimate in terms of t

Rover Pipeline Company Fined $431,000 For Multiple Incidents Across Ohio

From The Times Reporter: The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has ordered Energy Transfer, the company building the Rover natural gas distribution pipeline, to pay $431,000 for water and air pollution violations at various locations across the state, including Stark County.  In its order issued Friday, OEPA also instructed Energy Transfer to submit plans to address potential future releases and restore impacted wetlands along the $4.2 billion underground pipeline route, which stretches from Washington County in southeastern Ohio to Defiance County in the northwest.  Work on the pipeline began in mid-February, and state officials say a total of 18 incidents involving mud spills from drilling, stormwater pollution and open burning at Rover pipeline construction sites have been reported between late March and Monday to the agency. Read the whole article by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Two Drillers Selling Off Appalachian Assets

From Noble Energy : Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NBL) ("Noble Energy" or "the Company") today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to divest all of its upstream assets in northern West Virginia and southern Pennsylvania to an undisclosed buyer for a total amount of $1.225 billion. The amount includes upfront cash of $1.125 billion and an additional contingent amount of $100 million, structured as three separate payments of $33.3 million. The contingent payments to the Company are in effect should the average annual price realization at Dominion South exceed $3.30 per million Btu in the individual annual periods from 2018 through 2020. David L. Stover, Noble Energy's Chairman, President and CEO, commented "The Marcellus has been a strong performer for Noble Energy over the last few years, which is a direct result of the success of our employees' efforts. During the same time period, we have also significantly expanded the inventory of