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.

April 13-17

04-17-2014 Allegheny County Council poses its own questions on Deer Lakes drilling
For months, members of Allegheny County Council have heard from county residents speaking about the plan to drill for natural gas beneath Deer Lakes Park. ”Now, it’s the council members’ turn,” said Councilman Nicholas Futules, D-Oakmont, chair of the council’s parks committee…. - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-17-2014 Murrysville council delays vote on gas drilling ordinance
Urged by residents and some council members not to go forward, Murrysville council tabled a decision on an ordinance that would allow the creation of bid specifications for subsurface gas drilling deep under Murrysville Community Park. In January, the municipality received an offer from Huntley and Huntley, a… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-17-2014 State reaps $582M windfall on gas drilling in state forests
Private natural gas and oil wells in state forests pumped $582 million into Pennsylvania budgets in five years, more than tripling the combined revenue of the prior 60 years, state forestry officials said on Wednesday. Royalty and lease payments for 2008 through 2012 came largely from 191 new… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-17-2014 Meetings on proposed Shell ‘cracker’ plant in Beaver County lure 1,000
More than 1,000 people flocked to two informational meetings on Wednesday to hear about Royal Dutch Shell’s proposed petrochemical plant in Beaver County, but they didn’t get an answer to their biggest question. “I’m like everyone else; I want to know if they’re going to build the… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-17-2014 Attorney General’s agents reportedly interviewing those with natural gas royalty payment issues: lawmaker
Agents from the state Attorney General’s office reportedly have been in Bradford County interviewing leaseholders who complain their natural gas royalties from Chesapeake Energy are below the amount guaranteed by law. State Sen. Gene Yaw, R-Lycoming, whose district includes Bradford County,… - Harrisburg Patriot-News
04-17-2014 DCNR report quantifies Marcellus impacts on public lands
A state report released Thursday concluded shale gas exploration and production on state lands “is neither benign nor catastrophic.” The report represents the first comprehensive effort by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to study the changes the… - Scranton Times
04-17-2014 Gas holdouts unconvinced of safety
NEW CASTLE — When Suzanne Matteo and her husband, Martin, bought their house on four acres in Pulaski Township they had a plan. They would grow a huge vegetable garden, raise lots of flowers and a few chickens and enjoy the fresh air and quiet. Someday, maybe, they would… - New Castle News
04-16-2014 Supporters surface at hearing on Deer Lakes Park drilling
Allegheny County Council members have heard comments from residents opposed to drilling for natural gas under Deer Lakes Park since August. But at a public hearing on Tuesday, they heard for the first time from dozens of residents and businesspeople who support drilling under the… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-16-2014 Another GOP lawmaker backs drilling industry tax
HARRISBURG, Pa. — Another Republican state lawmaker in the Republican-controlled Legislature is lining up behind a proposal to impose a new tax on Pennsylvania’s booming natural gas industry… - AP
04-16-2014 Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. Donates $2.5 Million to Lackawanna College
Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation announced earlier this week a gift of $2.5 million to the Lackawanna College School of Petroleum & Natural Gas to help train and encourage future generations to work in northeastern Pennsylvania. As an industry leader producing approximately 1.5 billion cubic feet of… - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
04-16-2014 Brad Koplinski signs anti-fracking pledge, first candidate for statewide office to do so
The Republicans and Grover Norquist have their no tax pledge, which Tom Corbett famously signed and awkwardly violated. Now the Democrats – at least those on the greener fringes of the party – have their own no-fracking pledge, and lieutenant governor candidate Brad Koplinski has… - Harrisburg Patriot-News
04-15-2014 Stock performance drives executive pay at most energy firms
If executive compensation packages for the region’s largest energy companies were split on two sides of a scale — with incentives tied to the companies’ stock performance on one side and all other metrics on the other — the stock side would hit the ground. The move to align executives’ pay with the money they generate for… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-15-2014 No penalty for oil and gas consultant for unauthorized practice of law
Although a natural gas consultant was found to have engaged in the unauthorized practice of law for helping draft a lease, the state Superior Court has dismissed the counterclaims against him. Judges on the panel said the consultant’s advice provided a benefit to… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-15-2014 West Newton Council approves seismic testing for natural gas
An oil and gas services company received permission on Monday to install recorders in West Newton to collect seismic data from underground explosions to determine whether the land underneath the 1.1-square-mile borough contains pockets of natural gas. – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-15-2014 Warrants obtained in thefts from well, pipeline sites
State police obtained arrest warrants from District Judge Ethan Ward for three men accused of stealing copper, batteries and other items from gas well pads and pipeline sites last month. The thefts also halted production at two well pads. Jeffrey B. Little Sr., 38, of 74 Highland Ave., Avella,… - Washington Observer-Reporter
04-15-2014 Pennsylvania won’t take action on quakes
NEW CASTLE — Pennsylvania officials plan no action despite new Ohio rules on drilling that affect a seismically active area near the state line. The new rules, issued by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources last week, require that new gas and oil drilling permits within three miles of… - New Castle News
04-15-2014 East Allegheny board to take time to evaluate oil, gas agreement with EQT Production Co.
East Allegheny School District officials want to evaluate land and the potential financial gain of an oil and gas lease agreement with EQT Production Co. before signing on the dotted line. School directors changed a motion at Monday’s meeting from approving an… - McKeesport Daily News
04-15-2014 DuBois Council mulls amending zoning rules to limit gas extraction
The DuBois City Council voted Monday to move forward with amending the city’s zoning ordinance to prohibit horizontal drilling and extraction of natural gas in certain areas. City solicitor Toni Cherry recommended the council begin the process in light of a recent state Supreme Court ruling that struck down limits… - DuBois Courier-Express
04-14-2014 Where McCord, McGinty, Schwartz and Wolf stand
A look at where the four Democratic gubernatorial candidates — state Treasurer Rob McCord, former Clinton White House environmental adviser Katie McGinty, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz and businessman Tom Wolf — stand on some key issues.. - AP
04-13-2014 Worth property owner wants out of 2005 gas lease
Mustafa Tayfur signed an oil and gas lease for his 107-acre property in Worth in 2005 that paid him just $3 an acre for drilling rights, but with the promise of 12 percent royalties on any minerals extracted from the ground. The company never drilled for oil or gas, and Tayfur, now hundreds of… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-13-2014 Drilling rejection a setback for Mars Home for Youth
The board of directors of the Mars Home for Youth briefly entertained the tantalizing prospect of signing a gas drilling lease that could help pay for badly needed upgrades at the century-old Adams facility. “We allowed ourselves five minutes of dreaming, ‘What would we do?’… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-13-2014 Report: Gas drilling weighs heavy on state roads
The natural gas industry is taking a toll on Pennsylvania’s roadways, and now that loss has an estimated dollar figure attached, according to a recent report by Rand Corp. Researchers say a single natural gas well tapped by hydraulic fracturing or fracking costs between $13,000 and $23,000 in overall damage to… - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader



April 6-11

04-11-2014 Shale gas drilling approaches Deer Lakes Park entrance
Drilling for natural gas near Allegheny County’s Deer Lakes Park isn’t just a possibility. It’s happening. Range Resources and Huntley & Huntley, the two Western Pennsylvania-based energy companies trying to lease the county’s mineral rights at the park, have drilled 109 shallow ones in West Deer and Frazer in the past decade… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-11-2014 Classes prepare students for work in oil and gas
WAYNESBURG – Students in the junior and senior classes at Waynesburg Central High School were presented with a unique opportunity this year to study for certification with the Petroleum Energy Council. Earning PEC certification enables students to enter the oil and natural gas industry in… - Washington Observer-Reporter
04-11-2014 Senate acts on gas lease bills while House negotiates royalty payment bill
HARRISBURG – Landowners with gas leases would gain some legal rights in their dealings with gas companies under legislation approved by the Senate this week. And House lawmakers from the gas drilling regions are seeking compromise on a bill to limit what companies can deduct in post-production costs tied to… - Wilkes-Barre Citizens’ Voice
04-11-2014 Officials voice concern about a severance tax on gas drilling
WYSOX TOWNSHIP – At the Progress Authority’s annual dinner on Thursday, the president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition and state Sen. Gene Yaw both expressed concern that Pennsylvania will enact a severance tax on natural gas drilling. ”There are a number of gubernatorial candidates – certainly among the… - Towanda Daily Review
04-11-2014 Court blocks use of eminent domain on pipeline to pass through Lancaster County
York County landowners affected by the same proposed Marcellus Shale pipeline that would run through Clay and West Cocalico townships in Lancaster County have won a court battle blocking Sunoco Logistics from condemning their land. In a March 25 ruling in York County Common Pleas Court, Judge Stephen… - Lancaster Intelligencer Journal
04-11-2014 Dems running for governor propose taxing gas drillers to benefit education
Democrats running for governor seem to be competing to convince voters they will dip deepest into the pockets of gas drillers to replace $1 billion that Gov. Tom Corbett has cut from education spending. All four candidates running for the party’s nomination propose a… - Meadville Tribune
04-10-2014 Residents of Imperial Pointe near Pittsburgh airport push for drilling sites to be farther from their houses
Findlay residents who live near a proposed drilling site at Pittsburgh International Airport made another push on Wednesday to get Consol Energy Inc. to drill farther away from their homes. Bob Sterner, 52, gave Findlay supervisors a petition signed by more than… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-10-2014 Community officials worry enacting shale gas tax will diminish impact fee revenue
A push in Harrisburg to enact a tax on companies pulling natural gas and oil from Pennsylvania shale has some community leaders worried about losing the pipeline of impact fee money flowing to townships and counties. Act 13, the 2012 law that established the per-well fee paid by energy… - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-10-2014 Crews respond to leak at Chapin gas facility
BEAUMONT — Emergency crews reponded Tuesday to the Chapin Dehydration Station for a Mercaptan leak. It was the third time this week and the fifth time this year that crews had to go to the station because of problems. Crews were dispatched at 10:18 p.m. Tuesday for reports of an odor of… - Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
04-10-2014 DEP issues Chevron nine citations in fatal gas well blast
For two days after a Marcellus Shale natural gas well exploded into flame in February in Greene County, the well owner, Chevron, refused to allow state investigators onto the property, in violation of oil and gas laws, the state said today. That conflict, along with other problems that resulted from the fire that… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-09-2014 Public pushes back on gas drilling near Deer Lakes Park
Most of the Allegheny County residents who turned out for a council meeting Tuesday night voiced their opposition to the county’s plan to drill for natural gas under Deer Lakes Park. The message for the 15 members of council: Vote no to fracking. ”Please do not allow our parks to be fracked. They are much too valuable,”… - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
04-09-2014 Energy firms want role in next phase of shale case
HARRISBURG, Pa. — The energy industry wants a Pennsylvania state court to let it play a formal role in sorting out the loose ends left to resolve after a landmark court decision on a new state law designed to modernize oil and gas drilling regulations… - AP
04-09-2014 Corbett cheers Aqua on use of natural gas
SPRINGFIELD — Gov. Tom Corbett praised Aqua for its entrepreneurial spirit while heralding his Republican administration’s energy policies during a tour of the company’s compressed natural gas filling station Tuesday. Aqua is using a $225,000 state grant to help purchase nine CNG-fueled dump… - Primos Delaware County Daily and Sunday Times
04-08-2014 Judge hears dispute over roadway use for seismic testing in Hempfield
If a Westmoreland County township wants to regulate an activity, it has to pass an ordinance, a lawyer for a Texas seismic testing company argued on Monday in federal court in Pittsburgh. “This case is about Hempfield overreaching,” said Kevin Gormly, a lawyer for ION Geophysical Corp. of Houston…. - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
04-08-2014 North Dakota official tells of $2 billion fracking windfall
There’s money in fracking — just ask North Dakota Treasurer Kelly Schmidt. Schmidt, who was in Columbus yesterday for a State Financial Officers Foundation meeting, said North Dakota’s Legacy Fund is approaching $2 billion. The fund, which has no earmarks for how it will be spent, receives 30… - Columbus Dispatch
04-08-2014 Full refunds demanded in Marcellus natural gas royalty dispute
WILLIAMSPORT — A company that has interests in Marcellus Shale natural gas leases wants an arbitration panel to order a full refund for what it alleges have been improper deductions from royalty payments by Chesapeake Appalachia. Scout Petroleum of Nicholson has asked the American Arbitration Association… - Harrisburg Patriot-News
04-07-2014 Yuengling to convert methane, natural gas into electricity
PORT CARBON – A combined heat and power system that has been “two years in the making” at America’s Oldest Brewery’s Mill Creek plant is expected to become operational in the next two to three weeks. Robert Seaman Jr., plant manager at Yuengling, said Friday that the CHP… - Pottsville Republican and Evening Herald
04-07-2014 Fracking the Marcellus Shale from a Quaker perspective
What do Pennsylvania Quakers think of Marcellus Shale fracking in their midst? Not much good. Three northern Pennsylvania Quakers living amid fracking in northern Pennsylvania, and a Penn State professor who’s studied the economic impact of natural gas development on communities, gathered in Lancaster… - Lancaster Intelligencer Journal
04-06-2014 Greene County creeks leased for drilling
Two Greene County creeks are doubling as drilling sites for local energy companies, joining the more than 1,400 acres of public waterways across Pennsylvania leased to natural gas companies by the state in the past year. Sections of Ten Mile and Dunkard creeks, both state-owned waterways, were… - Washington Observer-Reporter