Showing posts from November, 2017

CELDF Looking for Signatures to Get Amendment to Ohio Constitution on Ballot

From Efforts to give Ohioans more power to pass and enforce local laws that might conflict with state laws gained initial approval Monday.  Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine on Monday certified petitions for two proposed amendments to the state constitution: the Ohio Community Rights Amendment and the Initiative and Referendum Amendment for Counties and Townships. DeWine's certification is the first in a long series of steps for the measures to appear on a statewide ballot.  The community rights amendment would establish a constitutional right to local community self-government for the "health, safety and welfare of community members." The county and township amendment would extend Ohio's constitutional right to initiative and referendum on state and city laws to county and township laws.  The amendments were drafted to address what supporters say is growing influence from the Ohio Statehouse on local, community decisions. The amendment is back

Program in St. Clairsville Offering Free Training for Natural Gas Utility and Pipeline Jobs

From WGCJTA: An exciting opportunity is here to access a training program to build a career in the natural gas utility and pipeline business.  The training is free, companies are hiring and the careers are rewarding.   The first round of classes start November 30th and January 8th at the Armstrong County Industrial Development Council in Freeport, PA and on January 15that Belmont College in St. Clairsville, OH.   This new, targeted training program for displaced coal workers and others in the Appalachian region will introduce participants to natural gas utility and pipeline operations careers and enable them to become stronger candidates for jobs.   The Natural Gas Utility & Pipeline Field Skills Training Program is 4 week of blended classroom and hands-on training that improves employability by providing a basic understanding and awareness of natural gas, the natural gas utility and pipeline industry.  This program was designed by the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) in coll

EnerVest Faces FBI Investigation for Alleged Lease Fraud in Ohio

From the Wall Street Journal: The Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into an eastern Ohio landowner’s claims that oil-and-gas investment firm EnerVest Ltd. sold valuable shale-drilling rights on his property that should have been his to sell, according to people familiar with the matter.  The probe follows allegations made against EnerVest in a more than two-year-old civil case filed in Ohio’s Guernsey County, where drilling into the prolific Utica Shale has made the state one of the country’s top energy producers.  The case involves EnerVest as well as Ascent Resources LLC, a company started by the late oilman Aubrey McClendon and two big investment firms, which has delayed plans to drill the property because of the dispute.  Ascent has become one of the country’s top natural-gas producers by drilling one gusher after another in eastern Ohio; it is preparing for an initial public stock offering or sale that could value the company at more than $3.5 billion. It acquired

Ohio EPA Comes After Rover Pipeline Again After New Spill

From The Canton Repository: The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency this week requested Rover Pipeline pause horizontal boring work after yet another spill of clay-based drilling slurry.  The latest incident happened Nov. 16, when 200 gallons of drilling slurry spilled into the Black Fork Mohican River in Ashland County. It was the largest of three spills near the river this month, and close to the site of a 50,000-gallon spill in April.  In a letter Wednesday, Ohio EPA Director Craig Butler asked Rover to pause its boring and review plans to prevent and clean up spills.  Butler also said he would ask the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to intervene.  “I cannot explain how disappointed I am with the continued trend of Rover causing environmental damage in Ohio by continuing operations causing unauthorized discharges to Ohio waterways,” Butler wrote. “I understand the significance of this project, and while Ohio remains supportive of oil and gas infrastructure developmen

Courts Grant City of Green a Victory in Fight Against NEXUS Pipeline

From the Akron Beacon Journal: The city won a temporary reprieve Wednesday in its ongoing fight to keep the controversial 36-inch Nexus gas transmission pipeline out of the community.  In a 2-1 decision, the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals granted the city’s request to block construction of the pipeline in an 8-mile area of the city’s southern sector while other legal appeals to the project are pending.  Judges Eric Clay and Bernice Donald approved the stay, while Judge David McKeague penned the dissenting opinion.  “What’s most exciting is that by granting the stay it shows our objection has merit and we have potential to win the case,” Mayor Gerard Neugebauer said. “The court wouldn’t issue the stay if the case didn’t have merit.”  The mayor said the stay means “Nexus cannot proceed with any construction within the city of Green [for now] as they anticipated.” Click here to continue reading. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Latest ODNR Report: Utica Shale Rig Count Holds at 23

New permits issued last week:   6   (Previous week:  7 )  -1 Total horizontal permits issued:  2687   (Previous week:  2681 )  +6 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2180   (Previous week:  2178 )  +2 Total horizontal wells producing:  1729  (Previous week:  1714 )  +15 Utica rig count:  23  (Previous week:  23 )   +-0 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Activists Admit Methane FLIR Videos Not Supported by Scientific Analysis

by Seth Whitehead, Energy in Depth An Earthworks spokeswoman made a big  gaffe  in a small Oklahoma newspaper last month that confirms what experts have been saying for years about anti-fracking groups’ misleading use of “Forward Looking Infrared” (FLIR) images— they are devoid of scientific evidence and are specifically designed to scare the public in an effort to advance the “Keep It In the Ground” movement’s agenda. Earthworks’ Hilary Lewis  admitted  during an interview with the  Kingfisher Times & Free Press  that FLIR images featured in an Earthworks/Coalition for Oklahoma Renewable Energy (CORE)  report offered  no scientific data  to support the report’s claim that Oklahoma oil and gas sites “spew toxic pollution into the air, like an invisible oil spill.” As the  Times & Free Press  reported: “ No air quality tests were conducted  in connection with the infrared drone photographs to quantify what amount of methane or other pollutants, if any, were being emitted

Rex Energy is Still Targeting Carroll County

From The Canton Repository: Rex Energy is working on 10 new Utica Shale wells in Carroll County that will begin producing next year.  The company has drilled three wells on its Jenkins pad in Washington Township and plans to start production in January. Each well has an average lateral length of 6,500 feet.  The company has three wells already producing in the area. Those wells will be shutdown while workers frack the three new wells with an improved technique, said Tom Stabley, Rex president and chief executive, during a conference call with investors Wednesday.  Rex also is drilling the fifth of seven wells on its Goebeler pad in Harrison Township. Those wells have an average lateral length of 7,500 feet and should start producing during the second quarter of 2018. The whole article can be read by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

GE Considering a Dump of Baker Hughes Just Months After Merger

From the Houston Chronicle: The future of Baker Hughes is again uncertain as its parent company, the financially struggling General Electric Co., considers unloading its ownership in the energy services giant just four months after acquiring a majority stake in a much-heralded merger.  The disclosure by the new GE chief executive John Flannery that he is seeking a way out of the deal consummated by his predecessor, Jeffrey Immelt, adds to three years of turmoil for the storied Houston firm that traces its roots back to a revolutionary drill bit invented by Howard Hughes Sr. more than a century ago. Since November 2014, Baker Hughes has been buffeted by an unsuccessful takeover bid by its local rival, Halliburton, and battered by the worst oil bust in a generation before seemingly getting rescued by a merger with GE's oil and gas division, which closed in July.  GE owns 62.5 percent of Baker Hughes, but it's still unclear how it might divest its holdings. GE, headquartered

FERC Continues to Loosen the Leash on Rover Pipeline

From MDN: The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission last Thursday granted Rover Pipeline permission to resume horizontal directional drilling (HDD) at four more locations where it had been stopped. One of those locations is drilling under the Ohio River in the Majorsville area. Rover is a $3.7 billion, 711-mile natural gas pipeline that (will eventually) run from PA, WV and eastern OH through OH into Michigan and on to Canada. A large portion of the pipeline began flowing natural gas on Sept. 1st (see Big Portion of Rover Pipeline Now Up & Running – Thru Most of Ohio ). Since then, Phase 1A of the pipeline has steadily increased its throughput and now flows over 1.2 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of Utica/Marcellus Shale gas to Defiance, OH (see Rover Pipe Nearly Doubles Flow with Addition of Carroll, OH Compressor ). However, it could flow more, if the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) would allow Rover to finish Phase 1B pipeline work in OH/WV to feed more gas to t

Report: Ohio Counties Have Received More Than $300 Million For Road Improvements From Utica Shale Operators

by Jackie Stewart, Energy in Depth A new  report  by Energy In Depth and the Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) finds that oil and gas operators have paid more than $302.6 million for road, bridge and culvert improvements via the Road Use Maintenance Agreement (RUMA), which is used by Ohio counties to ensure road damages by heavy equipment being moved for shale drilling and pipeline work are either prevented or repaired. The report finds that RUMA funds were used to improve more than 639 miles of roadways from 2011-2017 in Ohio’s eight Utica Shale counties: Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Guernsey, Harrison, Jefferson, Monroe and Noble. Columbiana County Engineer Bert Dawson explained to EID, “Besides being an economic boom for eastern Ohio, the recent oil and gas activity has fostered millions of dollars of road improvements that have been much needed but unaffordable to cost strapped local government.” The report, entitled “The Utica Shale Local Support Series: Ohio’s Oil

Carroll County is No Longer the Leader in Utica Shale Permits

From The Canton Repository: For the first time in six years, Carroll County doesn’t have the most Utica Shale well permits in Ohio.  Belmont County surpassed Carroll on the Ohio Department of Natural Resources permit list released Tuesday.  Belmont had 526 permits for the week that ended Nov. 18, while Carroll had 525 permits.  Carroll had held the top number of Utica drilling permits in Ohio since 2011, according to an analysis of ODNR records by The Canton Repository. The county was an early focus of drillers before exploration migrated south and east toward the Ohio River. Read the original article by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Rig Count Down on Latest Utica Shale Permitting Report

New permits issued last week:   7   (Previous week:  9 )  -2 Total horizontal permits issued:  2681   (Previous week:  2674 )  +7 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2178   (Previous week:  2174 )  +4 Total horizontal wells producing:  1714  (Previous week:  1713 )  +1 Utica rig count:  23  (Previous week:  24 )   -1 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

IEA Predicts That U.S. Will Dominate Global Oil & Gas Markets During Biggest Boom in History

From Bloomberg: The U.S. will be a dominant force in global oil and gas markets for many years to come as the shale boom becomes the biggest supply surge in history, the International Energy Agency predicted. By 2025, the growth in American oil production will equal that achieved by Saudi Arabia at the height of its expansion, and increases in natural gas will surpass those of the former Soviet Union, the agency said in its annual World Energy Outlook . The boom will turn the U.S., still among the biggest oil importers, into a net exporter of fossil fuels.  “The United States will be the undisputed leader of global oil and gas markets for decades to come,” IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said Tuesday in an interview with Bloomberg television. “There’s big growth coming from shale oil, and as such there’ll be a big difference between the U.S. and other producers.” The agency raised estimates for the amount of shale oil that can be technically recovered by about 30 percent to 105

School Districts Approve Tax Abatement for Natural Gas Pipeline

From the Star Beacon: Two school districts in northeast Ashtabula County have approved 15-year tax abatement packages that will assist a $70 million natural gas pipeline construction project scheduled to start next year.  At separate meetings last week, members of the Conneaut and Buckeye Local school boards accepted plans on behalf of RH Energytrans LLC of Erie, Pennsylvania, that would abate 75 percent of the property tax the districts would collect from the project over a 15-year period. Even when the abatement is applied, the districts will still see annual tax revenue gains approaching $100,000, officials said.  At issue is a 30-mile stretch of new pipe that would originate in western Pennsylvania, pass through a portion of Conneaut and end at a location in North Kingsville, said Dennis Holbrook, a company spokesperson. As planned, the 12-inch pipe would be attached to an existing stretch of line, creating a 60-mile transport system, he said. The new pipe would be evenly spl

Wells Producing in Utica Shale Drop for Second Straight Week; Rig Count Holds Steady

New permits issued last week:   9   (Previous week:  3 )  +6 Total horizontal permits issued:  2674   (Previous week:  2665 )  +9 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2174   (Previous week:  2166 )  +8 Total horizontal wells producing:  1713  (Previous week:  1715 )  -2 Utica rig count:  24  (Previous week:  24 )   +-0 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Links of the Day: Rover Pipeline Progressing, Bowling Green Anti-Drilling Measure Flops, and More

Energy in Depth:   Anti-Fracking Antics in 2017 Have Been So Ridiculous It’s Scary    -    "The “Keep it In the Ground” movement has been a reliable source of ridiculous antics over the years, and 2017 has been no exception. In fact, anti-fracking stunts have been so absurd this year it’s downright scary..." RBN Energy:   Back On Top - Marcellus/Utica Natural Gas Production Breaking Records Again    -    "A year ago, Lower-48 natural gas production was in steep decline and averaging less than 71 Bcf/d by the fall, down from nearly 74 Bcf/d in February 2016. The oil-price crash of 2014 had taken a toll on gas output, led by a drop in Texas. To add to that, Marcellus/Utica gas supply — which had helped prop up overall domestic gas production volumes — was no longer growing enough to..." MDN:   FERC Gives Rover Pipe OK to Use Different Tech to Speed Up Drilling    -    "This story necessarily gets into the weeds of pipeline construction. But so you have the es

Court Battles Continue Over NEXUS Pipeline

From The Canton Repository: NEXUS Gas Transmission has federal approval to build its pipeline across Ohio, but it doesn’t hold rights to all of the land on the route.  So, the company has gone to court, where a group of landowners hit back this week with their own lawsuit against the pipeline.  NEXUS sued earlier this month to take temporary or permanent easements through eminent domain on 42 pieces of land in Stark, Summit, Wayne, Medina, Lorain, Sandusky, Wood and Erie counties.  In its federal lawsuit, NEXUS said it negotiated easements on 97 percent of some 2,000 properties and made final offers to holdouts in September, but those landowners rejected or failed to respond to the company’s proposals.  Many of the defendants are in Green, where landowners and the city have opposed the NEXUS project.  NEXUS asked the court to let it immediately take the easements and start construction. Under the company’s plan, a three-person commission would decide later how much the comp

Chesapeake Energy Trying Some New Techniques in Utica Shale

From The Independent: Chesapeake Energy has used new well-completion techniques to coax more production from its Utica Shale holdings.  Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake has drilled 735 Utica wells in Ohio, the most of any company.  In July, the company’s eight-well Ellie pad in Carroll County’s Orange Township began producing at an initial rate of 1,100 barrels of oil equivalent per well per day. Sixty-five percent of the production came from liquids, the company reported Thursday before a conference call with investors to discuss third-quarter results.  In the dry-gas part of the Utica, the three-well Schiappa Trust A pad in Jefferson County had an initial production rate of 20 million cubic feet of gas per well per day.  The company said new completion techniques improved 120-day Utica well results by 25 percent, and it planned to continue testing new completions designs in the Utica and Marcellus shales. Continue reading this article by clicking here. Connect with us on F

November 2017 Activity Maps Published by ODNR

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Rig Count is Up in Utica Shale, Number of Producing Wells is Down

New permits issued last week:   3   (Previous week:  6 )  -3 Total horizontal permits issued:  2665   (Previous week:  2662 )  +3 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2166   (Previous week:  2157 )  +9 Total horizontal wells producing:  1715  (Previous week:  1717 )  -2 Utica rig count:  24  (Previous week:  23 )   +1 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Justice Department Gives Chesapeake the Go-Ahead to Continue Slashing Royalties

From Reuters: The U.S. Department of Justice ended a three-year probe of Chesapeake Energy Corp’s ( CHK.N ) royalty payment and land purchase practices without taking action, the natural gas producer said in a securities filing on Thursday.  The department subpoenaed documents from the company in 2014 after dozens of landowners and others accused it of short-changing them on royalties for natural gas and other fuels.  Chesapeake said in the filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that the Justice Department advised it on Sept. 19 that it had concluded the probes. The company remains in discussions with the U.S. Postal Service and various states, which separately sought information about the practices, the filing said.  A spokesman for the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, company declined to comment further. Continue reading by clicking here. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog

Pipelines Primed to Pump Up Appalachian Economy

From Bloomberg: David Rheinlander used to dream of building a cabin in the woods behind his house in southwestern Pennsylvania. Now when the 57-year-old looks across his backyard, he sees a line of cut trees, piles of dirt, and stacks of steel pipe where he once envisioned a tiny cabin. For the past six months, construction crews carved their way through the back of his property. The roughly 100-foot-wide path they’re cutting through the rolling hills extends about 700 miles to the west, running through neighboring Ohio and all the way up into Michigan.  The pathway is for a pipeline that will bring huge amounts of natural gas out of sparsely populated Appalachia and into big cities across the Midwest. The pipeline, called Rover, is being built by Energy Transfer Partners LP , of Dallas, which has spent three years and a total $4.2 billion on the painstaking process of winning permits, clearing miles of rugged terrain, and fighting a pitched legal battle against environmental grou

Utica Rig Count Holds Steady for Second Straight Week

New permits issued last week:   6   (Previous week:  10 )  -4 Total horizontal permits issued:  2662   (Previous week:  2657 )  +5 Total horizontal wells drilled:  2157   (Previous week:  2150 )  +7 Total horizontal wells producing:  1717  (Previous week:  1716 )  +1 Utica rig count:  23  (Previous week:  23 )   +-0 Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Follow @EnergyNewsBlog