Weekly Clips

As a member service,each Friday we provide a roundup of articles of significance to Pennsylvania’s oil and gas industry that have appeared in newspapers within the region during the past week. Click on an item’s heading to read the article online. The past two weeks’ reports are included. Note that some news websites archive or remove articles after a short period. We try not to include articles that require a subscription to read.

August 24-29

08-29-2014 Online list released of water wells Pennsylvania regulators found harmed by drilling
Six years into a natural gas boom, Pennsylvania has for the first time released details of 243 cases in which companies prospecting for oil or gas were found by state regulators to have contaminated private drinking water wells… - AP
08-29-2014 Mounting fracking foes have oil industry concerned
HOUSTON — A fight over frack­ing is loom­ing in Texas. Another stand-off is shap­ing up in Col­o­rado. Yet drill­ers’ re­ac­tions couldn’t be more dif­fer­ent…. - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-29-2014 Indiana County’s Grant Township will fight wastewater disposal well
Grant Township supervisors voted unanimously on Thursday to defend an ordinance banning a wastewater disposal well, plunging the rural, northern Indiana County municipality into a federal court battle with Pennsylvania General Energy Co. Board members voted 3-0 to continue fighting the Warren County oil and gas… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-29-2014 W. Pa. township sued over gas drilling
PULASKI, Pa. — A western Pennsylvania couple is suing their township, claiming that supervisors improperly approved natural gas drilling in a residential area… - AP
08-29-2014 $90 billion left in Marcellus Shale, analyst says
About $90 billion of value remains in the Marcellus Shale, according to international energy, mining and metals analytical firm Wood Mackenzie. That estimate factors in the potential revenue from marketing the gas, minus development costs. The Houston-based firm expects the top 20… - Scranton Times
08-29-2014 Silica sand firm sues Wyoming County
A transload sand company, whose permit for a land development in Tunkhannock Twp. Wyoming County Planning Commission rejected in July, filed suit against the county. D&I Silica of Sheffield claims that the planning body “did not satisfy the explicit requirements” of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning… - Scranton Times
08-29-2014 Fracking report clears way for California oil, gas leasing to resume
The federal government will resume oil and gas leasing in California following a report released Thursday that found little scientific evidence that fracking and similar extraction techniques are dangerous. The Bureau of Land Management said the report — and additional… - Los Angeles Times
08-28-2014 Will proposed pipeline lower natural gas prices in Lehigh Valley?
Building a natural gas pipeline through the Lehigh Valley to New Jersey could help lower natural gas prices a bit for Pennsylvania residents, but don’t expect a savings windfall. It’s more likely to help prevent prices from rising. ”It won’t make it more expensive, and to the degree it allows more… - Allentown Morning Call
08-28-2014 Seismic testing suit settled
Center Township and Geokinetics USA Inc. settled a federal lawsuit filed by the company in July challenging the township’s ordinance regulating seismic testing in the township. The company, in a complaint filed in federal court in Pittsburgh, claimed the township adopted an ordinance in April that effectively prevented it… - Washington Observer-Reporter
08-27-2014 State determines wastewater from gas drilling contaminated drinking water in Westmoreland County
The state Department of Environmental Protection has officially determined that drinking water at a third residence is contaminated by WPX Appalachia LLC’s leaky Marcellus Shale gas drilling wastewater impoundment near Stahlstown, Westmoreland County. Whether that gets any of the three families living along rural Route 711… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-27-2014 Dem Wolf eyes shale’s ‘golden egg’ to boost school funding
Tom Wolf, the Democrat who could become Pennsylvania’s next governor, wants to invest more in public education and transportation infrastructure. But to see those plans through, his administration would require hundreds of millions of dollars from taxes on Marcellus shale and potentially from… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-27-2014 New hearings set in driller’s request for ‘forced pooling’ in Lawrence, Mercer counties
A lawyer tasked with sorting out a drilling company’s request to extract gas from beneath properties without owners’ approval in Mercer and Lawrence counties set a new date for a long-delayed hearing on the matter. Cumberland County attorney Michael L. Bangs, whom the state Department of… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-27-2014 Rex Energy expanding capacity in Butler Co.
STATE COLLEGE – Oil and gas exploration and production company Rex Energy said Tuesday it signed agreements with MarkWest Energy Partners that will expand the company’s natural gas processing capacity in its Butler operating area. Rex Energy said in a news release MarkWest will increase the total… - Washington Observer-Reporter
08-27-2014 Gas company owner admits defrauding Dominion Gas out of $950K
An Armstrong County man admitted on Tuesday in Pittsburgh federal court to stealing about $950,000 from Dominion Gas over 12 years by falsifying gas production reports. David Hilty, 57, of Kiski Township pleaded guilty to a mail fraud conspiracy. U.S. District Judge Mark Hornak scheduled his sentencing for… - Kittanning Leader-Times
08-26-2014 W.Va. seeks bids to drill for gas under Ohio River
MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) — The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources is seeking bids for natural gas drilling on state-owned land under the Ohio River… - AP
08-26-2014 Consol Energy eyes more from airport drilling
The focus Monday was clearly on the Marcellus Shale drilling, but there could be other opportunities at Pittsburgh International airport. Gov. Tom Corbett, Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, executives from Consol Energy and a cavalcade of elected officials gathered on… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-26-2014 T. Boone Pickens: 100 years of gas extraction jobs
On Monday afternoon, in a room of nearly 400 people involved in job training and placement and in the industries that create jobs, Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Labor and Industry Julia Hearthway said while the energy sector is the smallest sector in the state terms of jobs,… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-26-2014 Pleasantville man pleads guilty in ANF well-plugging case
A Pleasantville man pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court in Erie to charges he lied to the government, claiming he had plugged abandoned Elk County oil wells in accordance with the Safe Drinking Water Act when he had not. Ronald A. Wright, 45, pleaded guilty to one count of “false writing or… - Erie Times-News
08-26-2014 Pennsylvania natural gas development leading to reverse brain drain
CECIL TWP. — Matt Curry moved to Texas for work but kept his treasured Steelers season tickets in the hope he might return someday to western Pennsylvania. After graduating from Penn State with a degree in petroleum engineering, Curry didn’t have much of a choice but to leave. He got a job that… - Ellwood City Ledger
08-25-2014 Environmentalists raise concerns about gas line under French Creek
A proposed Marcellus Shale gas pipeline project under French Creek, just across the Pennsylvania border in southwestern New York, puts at risk endangered freshwater mussels in one of the nation’s most ecologically diverse waterways, according to the Allegheny Defense Project…. - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-25-2014 State OKs injection well near school
Despite protests and a rally by Brookfield Township residents, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources approved a permit for the construction of a Class II saltwater injection well at state Route 7 and McMullen Drive. The website lists the approval date as July 5. Critics are concerned about… - Sharon Herald
08-24-2014 Thousands of American steel jobs believed lost to import surge
The International Trade Commission cleared the way for anti-dumping penalties on cheap imports of oil and natural gas pipe from South Korea and five other nations that American steelmakers blamed for causing a severe oversupply, depressed prices and lost jobs…. - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-24-2014 Fracking pipeline not gushing yet
Aqua America’s $54 million investment in a pipeline to supply water for Marcellus Shale fracking operations has not exactly gushed profits, as hoped. ”We’ve built a pipeline that can carry three million gallons of water a day and we’re nowhere close to that,” Nicholas DeBenedictis, chief executive of… - Philadelphia Inquirer



August 17-22

08-22-2014 Sunoco rejects PUC judges, pushes ahead on pipeline
Despite an adverse advisory opinion that its Mariner East pipeline does not qualify as a public utility, Sunoco Logistics Partners is plowing ahead with plans to develop the Marcellus Shale project. The Philadelphia company, in a filing this week, urged the Pennsylvania… - Philadelphia Inquirer
08-22-2014 Compressed natural gas fueling station to open in 6 to 9 months in Dunmore
A Dunmore company’s public compressed natural gas fueling station should be operational in six to nine months, the firm’s chief executive officer said this week. Louis Evans of Commonwealth Energy Group recently announced the company would build the station in Dunmore…. - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
08-22-2014 Anti-drilling wastewater well billboards defended
An Ohio man who uses a biblical reference and a statement against “poisoned waters” on billboards opposing wells for disposal of gas-drilling wastewater says the First Amendment protects him from a lawsuit filed by a Texas well owner… - AP
08-22-2014 How to make the most out of your mineral rights: Geology
Joe Wilson is CEO of Infinity Resource Group, Inc., a professional mineral rights consulting firm in Parkersburg, W.Va., and a Registered Landman. David Pearl is managing director of a CNG patent holding company and president of a CNG fuel island development company. Your questions are… - Waynesburg Greene County Messenger
08-22-2014 AG: DEP gas records show improvement
The secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection and the state’s top auditor may have their disagreements on DEP’s oil and gas program, but both agree the agency’s record system needs a reboot. On July 22, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale released a… - Tunkhannock The New Age Examiner
08-22-2014 IMG offers details on power plants
TUNKHANNOCK — A company planning small gas-fired power plants met Wednesday with gas-savvy residents and officials who have learned much about living with well pads, compressors and pipelines. Now, they’re considering living next to electrical plants, including… - Tunkhannock The New Age Examiner
08-22-2014 Consol plans groundbreaking for airport drilling project
FINDLAY TWP. — The first phase of natural gas development at Pittsburgh International Airport begins Monday with a groundbreaking ceremony for a Consol Energy Inc. project there. Nick DeIuliis, president and chief executive officer of Consol Energy, Gov. Tom Corbett and Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald will host… - Beaver County Times
08-22-2014 FEMA halts flood assistance for properties with gas leases
MESHOPPEN TWP. — In fall of 2011, about a month after the flooded Meshoppen Creek spilled over its banks and into their basement, Pete and Sharon Morgan applied for federal flood assistance to help them move out of their home. They won’t get it, at least not anytime soon, due to a little-known… - Hazleton Standard-Speaker
08-22-2014 Airport too reliant on gas industry?
The region’s natural gas boom kept Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport afloat while the economic downturn dramatically slowed traffic at similar-sized airports, but some airport officials fear becoming too dependent on the industry. A Massachusetts Institute of Technology study found the Pittston Township… - Hazleton Standard-Speaker
08-21-2014 Peters councilman taking his shale ruling expertise on the road
David Ball has a story to tell, and people want to hear it. The 71-year-old Peters councilman has lately been in demand across the country for his expertise as a local official who stood up to state politicians and gas industry officials over the rights of local citizens to… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
08-21-2014 Energy sector powers Pa. pace
Pennsylvania’s economic growth outpaced the national average at the end of the year, suggesting the state’s gas drilling boom may have contributed to the improving performance as cold weather increased demand for natural gas. It was the first time in five years that Pennsylvania’s fourth-quarter… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-21-2014 Leechburg Area postpones decision to lease property for natural gas drilling
The Leechburg Area School Board has postponed until September its decision to lease district property in West Leechburg for natural gas drilling. A vote was scheduled for Tuesday to enter into an oil and natural gas agreement with EQT Production Co. for an 8.3-acre tract at Main and Giron… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-21-2014 Kiski Township OKs drilling rules
Kiski Township has opened its doors for oil and natural gas exploration. Township supervisors on Wednesday enacted an ordinance that allows, for the first time, drilling and natural gas operations in the township. It was approved 4-0, with Supervisor Michael Bash absent…. - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-21-2014 Barletta wants FEMA policy revised in favor of gas development
TUNKHANNOCK — The fate of five Wyoming County properties devastated by flooding and approved for federal buyouts hangs in limbo nearly three years after storms swept through the region. A policy issued May 5 by the Federal Emergency Management Agency prohibits… - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
08-20-2014 Pa. fines gas driller for losing control of well
HARRISBURG, Pa. — State environmental regulators have fined a gas drilling company for allowing natural gas to escape a well in northeastern Pennsylvania… - AP
08-20-2014 Coalition of health care professionals seek probe of state health department
HARRISBURG — A controversy over state oversight of Marcellus drilling-related health complaints took a new turn Monday when a coalition of health care professionals called for an independent probe of the state Department of Health. The call from two groups focused on public health came at a Capitol press… - Wilkes-Barre Citizens’ Voice
08-19-2014 Pennsylvania Department of Health will note fracking complaints
People who write to the state Department of Health to express worry that natural gas drilling might affect their health will receive return letters to document the correspondence, the agency said on Monday. The Pennsylvania Department of Health updated its process for handling… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-19-2014 Gas production from Marcellus shale sets record despite fewer new wells going online
Pennsylvania drillers are pulling record amounts of natural gas from the Marcellus shale even as they bring fewer new wells online, according to state data released on Monday. About 5,400 shale wells produced nearly 2 trillion cubic feet of gas during the first six months of the year, a 14 percent increase in production over… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-19-2014 Radiation measuring device triggered by load at Yukon facility
State officials are investigating a load of hazardous waste that set off radiation monitoring detector alarms last week at MAX Environmental Technologies Inc.’s hazardous waste treatment and storage facility in Yukon. Department of Environmental Protection inspectors received… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
08-19-2014 Kane adds CNG trucks
Kane Is Able Inc. made new additions to its fleet Monday — seven compressed natural gas trucks that burn fuel cleaner, run quieter and save money. The trucks were on display for an event for the media and customers at Kane’s Taylor headquarters. Natural gas is locally produced, and the trucks are environmentally… - Scranton Times
08-19-2014 UM study warns of health impacts from fracking
A University of Maryland study warns that without adequate safeguards, drilling for natural gas using hydraulic fracturing could harm the health of residents, workers and communities in Western Maryland. The study, released Monday, raises the stakes for a long-running state… - Baltimore Sun
08-18-2014 Lebanon Conservancy airs pipeline concerns to federal agency
The proposed Williams Partners natural gas distribution pipeline through Lebanon County could harm preserved farmland and sources of drinking water for thousands of county residents, the Lebanon Valley Conservancy told the Federal Regulatory Commission. Those concerns, along with others, were included in written comments the… - Lebanon Daily News
08-18-2014 Tanks, not gas well, caught fire
Though it was the first fire related to the Utica-Marcellus shale drilling that Mercer County has had, emergency management officials said the response “worked like clockwork” to douse a Friday night blaze located near, but not at, a gas well in Jefferson Township…. - Sharon Herald
08-17-2014 New Sewickley supervisors OK Marcellus Shale gas compressor
The New Sewickley Township supervisors have approved a Marcellus Shale gas compressor station near the Kretschmann Family Organic Farm, one of the region’s oldest and most successful Community Supported Agriculture operations. Don Kretschmann and his wife, Becky, who started the 80-acre organic farm… - POST-GAZ.
08-17-2014 Demand may determine if pipeline gets green light
On March 28 there was a knock on the door of Malinda Clatterbuck’s rural Lancaster County home. Standing on her front stoop was a pipeline company contractor who calmly told her he needed to walk her wooded 8-acre property to survey it for what she later learned would be a section of a proposed $3 billion, 177-mile… - Allentown Morning Call
08-17-2014 Equitrans seeks property under eminent domain
Equitrans, a natural gas company based in Pittsburgh, filed a civil complaint in federal court this week seeking a preliminary injunction to allow it to take possession of property in Washington Township, Greene County, in order to construct, operate and maintain a natural gas pipeline…. - Washington Observer-Reporter