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Industry Briefs

Industry Briefs

DPL Inc. announced it has sold its financial interest in Market Hub Partners (MHP) to a subsidiary of NiSource for $29 million in cash. This sale follows DPL's recent announcement of the sale of its natural gas retail distribution business to Indiana Energy. MHP is a natural gas storage company headquartered in Houston. DPL was required to separate its electric business units with the July passage of Ohio electric restructuring legislation. In so doing, the company said it was going to explore options for its gas businesses while focusing on electric generation. DPL said it has continued to expand its natural gas-fired generation business with the addition of 475 MW through two plans called "Phases One" and "Two." Two more phases, which have yet to be announced, will increase that capacity by 320 MW. These expansions are occurring in both Ohio and Indiana, DPL said, and will be immediately accretive to earnings as these units come online starting in the summer of 2000.

Petroleum Development Corp. acquired a 7,500-acre undeveloped lease in the Grand Valley Field of the Piceance Basin in western Colorado. The lease lies between areas which have been successfully developed by Barrett Resources, Occidental Petroleum, and others. PETD owns a 100% working interest on this land. The primary target formation in the Piceance Basin is the Mesaverde. Well depths may range from about 6,500 feet to 10,000 feet, depending upon the surface elevation. A number of well locations are available which are direct offsets to existing producing wells. Reserves of 1.5 Bcf or more per well are expected. The company plans to commence drilling on its acreage during the first quarter of 2000. Initial well spacing will be 40 acres. Tests by operators in the region indicate that closer spacing may be possible in the future. If successful, production from here could add as much as 5 Bcfe of new reserves in 2000.

Infinity, Inc., an independent producer in Eastern Kansas and Northeastern Oklahoma, announced the start of operations on its Labarge coalbed methane project in Sublette County, WY, part of the Green River Basin. With 100 drillable locations and assuming recovery of 80% of original gas in place, preliminary studies suggest reserves could be over 450 Bcf.

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