A decision by the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to set aside its original federal hydraulic fracturing (fracking) proposal has drawn plaudits from associations representing major oil and natural gas producers.
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Physical gas prices continued to advance Wednesday, posting an average gain of 12 cents overall. Multi-dollar gains permeated eastern delivery points, and Midwest locations also were firm. At the close of trading February futures had slipped 2.0 cents to $3.435 and March was down 1.6 cents to $3.437. February crude oil added 96 cents to $94.24/bbl.
Physical gas prices overall on average rose a nickel Tuesday, continuing Monday’s stout advance. However, while a scattering of Gulf Coast points managed gains, hefty losses were noted in the Midwest, Great Lakes and in more than a handful of Northeast locations. Options strategies seemed to be in play for the December contracts, and at the close December futures had risen 3.9 cents to $3.769 and January was higher by 2.4 cents to $3.892. January crude oil fell 56 cents to $87.18/bbl.
Effective Oct. 15 (Monday), producers have to notify the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by e-mail two days in advance of their plans to hydraulically fracture (frack) natural gas wells. An e-mail address system has been set up to allow operators to notify the the agency, said Khary Cauthen, senior director of federal relations with the American Petroleum Institute. Producers would send e-mails to EPA offices in the regions where they are operating. The EPA recently “made known” to producers a list of the e-mail addresses, according to API. “Having to notify the EPA two days before a specific operation we felt…makes sense. In other iterations of this rule, it was a longer time period of notification that did not make sense because sometimes locations or weather or what may have you will change exactly what the operation is. Two days before is appropriate,” Cauthen said. The notification requirement was part of the new source performance standards for fracked wells, which the EPA finalized in August (see NGI, Aug. 27). Both the API and the Independent Petroleum Association of America protested the EPA final standards, which are aimed at restricting volatile organic compounds and sulfur dioxide emissions from onshore natural gas operations, including fracked wells.
Beginning Monday, producers will have to notify the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) two days in advance by e-mail of their plans to hydraulically fracture (frack) natural gas wells
Corridor Resources Inc. and partner Petrolia Inc. are conducting a three-part exploration program on Anticosti Island in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence to advance the “exploration and development potential of the vast shale oil prospect” on the 3,050 square-mile island, Corridor said.
The number of “felt” manmade earthquakes induced by hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in oil and natural gas operations is negligible, the chair of a major report on seismicity activity told a Senate panel Tuesday. However the disposal of the water associated with fracking of shale gas wells is linked to increased quake activity, an official with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.
Natural gas production in the Lower 48 states declined by 0.2% to 72.54 Bcf/d in December from November’s record 72.68 Bcf/d. It was the first monthly decline in Lower 48 production since February 2011, according to figures released by the Energy Information Administration (EIA).
Shares of debt-burdened Quicksilver Resources Inc. fell Monday after the company reported lower profits and said production would be flat this year. Meanwhile, efforts on two joint venture deals continue, as the company targets more liquids-rich production, executives told financial analysts.