UGI Energy Services Inc. and Capitol Energy Ventures Corp. have taken firm capacity on the proposed Commonwealth Pipeline, making them anchor shippers on the project, which is sponsored by Inergy Midstream LP, UGI Energy and Capitol Energy. The contracts are for 10 years at negotiated rates. Commonwealth would provide a path for bringing gas produced in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays to markets in central and southeastern Pennsylvania and the greater Mid-Atlantic region (see Shale Daily, May 8). The proposed interstate pipeline will consist initially of 120 miles of 30-inch diameter pipeline extending from the southern terminus of the Inergy Midstream’s MARC I Pipeline in Lycoming County, PA, to several points of interconnection in southeastern Pennsylvania with other interstate pipelines, including NiSource Gas Transmission and Storage, Texas Eastern Transmission Co., Transco Pipeline, and Eastern Shore Natural Gas Co.

Wood Group has agreed to acquire Mitchell’s Oil Field Services Inc., a provider of maintenance, installation and fabrication services in the Bakken Shale, for $135 million subject to adjustments and anti-trust approval. The deal is expected to close during the fourth quarter. Mitchell’s will operate with existing management within Wood Group PSN and will complement the division’s existing operations and maintenance, construction supervision and survey services in the region. “The addition of Mitchell’s significantly expands our service offering and increases our presence in the region to approximately 650 personnel operating from nine locations,” said Wood Group PSN Americas President Derek Blackwood. “This acquisition is in line with our strategy to expand our presence in the U.S. oil shales and follows our purchase earlier this year of Wood Group Duval, which services the Eagle Ford shale region in South Texas.”

Goodrich Petroleum Corp. said the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has completed its investigation related to a fact-finding subpoena issued in 2011 related to the company’s Haynesville Shale reserves, and that no enforcement action has been recommended. “The company remains confident that its disclosure related to its Haynesville Shale wells and reserves meet all applicable legal requirements,” Goodrich management stated. In July 2011 the SEC began investigating U.S. onshore producers about unconventional reserves bookings and subpoenas were issued to several natural gas producers that included Goodrich, Quicksilver Resources Inc. and Exco Resources Inc. (see Shale Daily, Aug. 10, 2011; Aug. 3, 2011). The SEC investigation preceded a separate probe by the New York Attorney General’s Office, which had subpoenaed Goodrich, Range Resources Corp. and Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. about Marcellus Shale reserves bookings (see Shale Daily, Aug. 22, 2011). No other companies issued comments regarding the investigation, and the SEC had no comment.

MarkWest Energy Partners LP has signed a 10-year agreement to become a firm shipper on the Mariner East pipeline. Mariner East is designed to transport ethane and propane sourced at MarkWest’s Houston, PA, processing and fractionation complex to Sunoco‘s Marcus Hook facility near Philadelphia. Once delivered, the ethane-propane mix would be re-fractionated into purity products for sale into domestic and international markets. MarkWest has partnered with Sunoco Logistics Partners LP on the project (see Shale Daily, Sept. 8, 2011). Separately, Marcellus Shale producer Range Resources Corp. signed a 15-year agreement to be an anchor shipper. “With the Mariner East Project, Range expects to have three significant options that together provide substantial flexibility for ethane and liquids transportation and marketing from our Marcellus operations,” said Range CEO Jeff Ventura. “In addition, these projects are expected to enhance the economics of our core wet gas production and future resource potential value.”