Weekly Clips

As a member service, each Monday 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.

April 13-19

04-19-2015 Ohio’s jobs in drilling drop after crude falls
The steep drop in oil prices appears to be taking a toll on employment in the state’s oil and natural-gas industry. Ohio’s mining and logging jobs, a category that includes oil and gas companies, fell by 500 in March, according to a report released yesterday… - Columbus Dispatch
04-19-2015 At well sites across Pa., pictures help tell the story
Pennsylvania’s traditional oil and gas companies have asked for evidence that their impact on the environment could justify stronger regulations that the state wants to apply to their operations. The state Department of Environmental Protection is preparing to show it to… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-19-2015 Use of multiple contractors could leave oil, gas operators open to hackers
In the vast network of data, drilling and pipes that’s made Marcellus shale an international energy reserve, computer attacks pose a serious threat. Hackers target energy companies all the time because of the information and technology involved, but the public rarely hears about it, said Paul Kurtz,… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-17-2015 Marcellus Shale drilling plan advances in Penn Township
Plans for a Marcellus Shale gas drilling operation in Penn Township are moving forward, as the company behind them is preparing to set up a well pad in the northeastern part of the township. The company, Apex Energy LLC, could start drilling in the next month or so…. - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-17-2015 Anti-drilling protest interrupts Drexel energy forum
A group of vocal anti-drilling activists Thursday night briefly disrupted a Drexel University symposium on exporting liquefied natural gas, giving the city a flavor of the opposition that LNG might arouse. ”I’m sorry, I’m going to have to interrupt you and ask you to sit down,”… - Philadelphia Inquirer
04-17-2015 Judges Skeptical of Challenge to Proposed E.P.A. Rule on Climate Change
WASHINGTON — A panel of federal judges appeared inclined on Thursday to dismiss the first legal challenge to President Obama’s most far-reaching regulation to slow climate change. But in the arguments before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, lawyers for the nation’s two largest coal… - New York Times
04-17-2015 Trout Unlimited seeks volunteers to monitor streams
PATTON – Following increased local shale gas development and concerns over potential impacts on water quality, Trout Unlimited’s coldwater conservation corps is seeking volunteers to monitor streams in their areas. The program, free to participants, trains volunteers to detect and alert… - Clearfield Progress
04-16-2015 Its appeal denied, Range Resources ordered to disclose drilling chemicals in Washington County lawsuit
Range Resources Corp. must gather information about the chemicals its contractors used at a Washington County shale gas well and disclose it to neighbors who sued over leaks from a nearby wastewater holding pond, state judges said this week. Superior Court denied the Fort Worth-based gas producer’s appeal of a… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-16-2015 Hearings set on new environmental rules for gas, oil drilling in Pa.
The state Department of Environmental Protection set the time and dates for three extra public hearings it will conduct on the latest draft of environmental rules for oil and gas wells. Those who want to comment on changes to the draft can do so April 29 at… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-16-2015 Kinder Morgan moves forward with pipeline plans
Roughly 70 miles of the proposed Kinder Morgan 430-mile Northeast Energy Direct pipeline project will cut through Bradford and Susquehanna counties en route to the New England market if it receives the necessary federal, state and local approvals. The Houston-based Kinder Morgan held an open house Wednesday at the Blue… - Scranton Times
04-16-2015 State records miss half the waste pumped into injection wells
HARRISBURG — State environmental officials didn’t account for half the waste pumped into injection disposal wells last year, a comparison with federal data shows. The state’s injection wells took 330,000 barrels of waste left over after natural gas drilling last year, according to the U.S. Environmental… - New Castle News
04-15-2015 Oversupply causing oil and natural gas drillers to scale back
Oil and natural gas drillers are hitting the brakes on U.S. shale production as prices tumble, but the U.S. remains poised to slash its reliance on energy imports by 2040, according to a government report. In the short term, the domestic drilling industry is facing significant… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-15-2015 West Goshen vote put off on pipeline settlement
West Goshen Township officials faced anger at a meeting Tuesday from residents who urged them to reject a proposed settlement that would let Sunoco Logistics continue limited construction for its Mariner East pipeline project – and would, critics said, make fighting future pipeline… - Philadelphia Inquirer
04-15-2015 Judge refuses to dismiss charges over Lycoming natural gas well site discharge
WILLIAMSPORT – A Lycoming County judge has refused to dismiss criminal charges against a Texas natural gas company over the discharge of an estimated 57,000 gallons of wastewater from a series of tanks at a well site. Judge Marc F. Lovecchio Tuesday found the state attorney’s office had… - Harrisburg Patriot-News
04-14-2015 Waste handler McCutcheon Enterprises thrives as oil, gas industry shifts
A trip around the sprawling lots and cavernous garage bays at McCutcheon Enterprises Inc.’s hilltop headquarters in Westmoreland County gives the first hint at how many services the family-owned waste management company offers. The rows of equipment include custom-built vacuum trucks, 10,000-gallon… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-14-2015 Governor Wolf appoints business recruiter to advise on energy and manufacturing
Gov. Tom Wolf has tapped Democrat and lawyer-lobbyist David Sweet to fill a new advisory position the governor says he established to stimulate growth and competition in Pennsylvania’s energy and manufacturing industries. Sweet, 66, a Pittsburgh native and Washington County state lawmaker from… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-13-2015 Company, state investigate Marshall County pipeline ruptures
GLEN DALE, W.Va. (AP) – Williams Energy and state regulators are investigating two natural gas pipeline ruptures that occurred within hours of each other in Marshall County… - AP


April 6-12

04-10-2015 Consol Energy shedding workforce amid low oil prices
Citing low oil prices, Consol Energy Inc. is shedding oil and gas employees from its workforce. The Canonsburg-based energy company on Friday was in the process of notifying affected employees at its Indiana County field office, said Byron Stauffer, executive director of the Indiana County Office of Planning and… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-09-2015 EPA seeks to ban fracking wastewater from going to public treatment plants
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing to ban publicly owned wastewater treatment facilities from taking untreated waste fluids from the unconventional oil and gas industry in a move that would guarantee the end of a disposal practice that the industry and states have already abandoned…. - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-09-2015 Natural gas industry offers stability for Western Pennsylvania economy, experts say
The natural gas industry must become a bigger part of the Western Pennsylvania economy if the region is going to keep pace with job growth around the rest of the nation, economists said Wednesday. “Pittsburgh has not latched on to any current driving forces, economic… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-09-2015 Shell’s $70 billion takeover could herald wave of mergers
LONDON (AP) – Oil and gas company Shell has agreed to buy British rival BG Group for 47 billion pounds ($69.7 billion), in a deal that may signal a new wave of mega-mergers as the energy industry tries to adapt to lower prices… - AP
04-09-2015 Drillers ponder lawsuit against DEP rules
Trade groups representing Pennsylvania’s smaller oil and gas producers say they are likely to take legal action against the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) over proposed regulations they call “the death knell of a future generation of oilmen.”… - Bradford Era
04-09-2015 Highland Township Supervisors meet with CELDF over injection well
JAMES CITY — On Wednesday, the Highland Township Supervisors reported they held an executive session on March 27 with the attorneys of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). The session was called to discuss the case filed in federal court in Erie… - Bradford Era
04-08-2015 DEP settles with Pike County pipeline builder over environmental violations
The Department of Environmental Protection has announced a settlement of $150,000 with Columbia Gas Transmission, LLC. for multiple violations of the Clean Streams Law during construction of a natural gas pipeline in 2011… - Pocono Record
04-08-2015 Resolution opposing pipeline proposed
Penn Forest Township looks to be the latest Carbon County municipality to take an official stance on the proposed 114-mile PennEast natural gas pipeline. Supervisors on Monday night passed a motion requesting solicitor Thomas Nanovic to draft a resolution opposing the project…. - Lehighton Times News
04-07-2015 Could testing streams be a new tool to monitor for methane leaks?
Groundwater surveys around natural gas drilling sites usually begin at a homeowner’s water well or kitchen faucet. The tests provide a snapshot of water quality at a specific site and time. Now researchers with the U.S. Geological Survey, Pennsylvania State University and the University of Utah are finding that streams running… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-07-2015 Pa. DEP adds 15 days, 3 hearings to comment period on gas drilling rules
The state Department of Environmental Protection will extend for 15 days a public comment period on the latest draft of new rules for oil and gas drillers, and schedule three more hearings on the proposed regulations. The department on Monday extended the comment period on so-called Chapter… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-07-2015 Fracking moratorium passes Senate
The natural gas extraction method known as “fracking” would be banned in Maryland until October 2017 under legislation approved Monday night by the Maryland Senate. lRelated Fracking splits Garrett County The Baltimore Sun  Fracking splits Garrett County See all related… - Baltimore Sun
04-07-2015 County officials fear loss of drilling impact fees
MERCER COUNTY – Home to 26 “spud” gas wells, Mercer County netted more than a quarter-million dollars last year from the state Act 13 impact fee, but Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposed changes for that tax structure are leaving county officials worried about the future of that revenue…. - Sharon Herald
04-07-2015 Restoring aging county-owned bridges tied to natural gas impact fee
On sparsely traveled back roads across Lancaster County, more than two dozen narrow, unassuming bridges built in a simpler era are showing their age. Concrete is weathered and cracking. The decks are no longer safe for even moderate loads. The Lancaster County commissioners are addressing the problem by turning to… - Lancaster Intelligencer Journal
04-06-2015 Major Pennsylvania bat species listed as ‘threatened’ due to disease
The northern long-eared bat, until recently one of the most common bat species in Pennsylvania, was listed as “threatened” last week by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, primarily due to white-nose syndrome, a fungal disease that has decimated the species and killed millions of bats… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-06-2015 Experts guide vehicles over Pennsylvania’s rural roads to gas wells
With hundreds of truck trips needed to haul water, sand and equipment to and from each drill site, directing traffic over the rolling hills of Marcellus shale country can seem like it requires a magic wand — or at least an orange flag. That’s where Mike Boyde comes in…. - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-06-2015 Gas company seeks leasing rights in Penn Hills without drilling plan
Gas drillers have contacted homeowners living near the former Atlas Cement Co., but company officials say that there currently are no plans to frack in Penn Hills. EQT Corp. sent letters to residents in Penn Hills who own property where the company is interested in leasing drilling rights…. - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-06-2015 Indiana County commissioners urge agencies to withhold permits for injection wells
Indiana County’s commissioners are urging state and federal agencies to reject permit applications from companies seeking to dispose of hydraulic fracking waste using injection wells in the county. Commissioners Chairman Rodney Ruddock said vocal opposition from residents… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-06-2015 Energy companies explore lower shales for greater yields of gas, liquids
Low natural gas prices that have companies balancing spending cuts with promises of ramped-up production are driving some new development in the Utica and Point Pleasant shale, where deeper wells can yield more gas and liquids. Range Resources, Consol Energy, and Rice Energy are among Marcellus shale… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-06-2015 Williams Partners to buy majority interest in Utica East
NEW YORK — Williams Partners L.P. will expand its stake in Utica East Ohio Midstream to a majority interest for about $575 million… - AP
04-06-2015 UGI to upgrade gas lines for Jessup power plant
JESSUP — UGI Utilities Inc. will add to its local pipeline system to deliver gas to a power plant proposed by Chicago-based Invenergy LLC. The utility company plans to upgrade 19 miles of existing lines and construct 3 miles of new lines, it announced Friday…. - Scranton Times
04-06-2015 Fracking waste stirs controversy in Athens
The tractor-trailers arrive at a steady pace, turning off Rt. 50 and climbing a hill to a collection of tall, green metal tanks. The trucks haul long, white tanks that are bare except for a number that identifies their company and one word that has riled a vocal population in… - Columbus Dispatch
04-06-2015 DEP director seeking gas pipeline strategy
A “spider web” of new natural gas pipelines will be built across Pennsylvania during the next decade and the state’s top environmental official wants to develop a strategy for minimizing the impact on the environment. John Quigley, secretary-designate of the Department of Environmental… - Pottsville Republican and Evening Herald
04-06-2015 Dallas doctor gets no answers on frack fluid ingredients
After his failed attempts to fight the state’s oil and gas law in court, Alfonso Rodriguez, M.D., is ready to sign a nondisclosure form to view a full list of ingredients in hydraulic fracturing fluid. If only someone could tell him where to find it. Since 2010, the kidney specialist has been trying to obtain information on… - Hazleton Standard-Speaker