Pennsylvanians believe that the benefits of natural gas drilling in the state’s shale plays outweigh any potential problems, but want the state to impose an extraction tax and require the disclosure of chemicals used by drillers, according to the results of a survey by the Muhlenberg Institute of Public Opinion and the University of Michigan’s Center for Local, State and Urban Policy.
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The Pennsylvania governor who led the state through the first years of the Marcellus Shale boom said the natural gas industry has “screwed up so badly” that it brought a tide of negative public opinion on itself.
Utilities and state regulators have joined nuclear industry scientists throughout the United States in studying events unfolding at Japan’s badly damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant complex.
May natural gas futures were unable to sustain Friday’s 13-cent advance and stumbled badly as weaker crude oil and equity markets set a negative tone to the day’s trading. Analysts see no reconciliation between plump production and recession-diminished demand for another two quarters and suggest things could get really grim if next winter is mild.
Although it appears that the badly listing Thunder Horse platform in the Gulf of Mexico may require extensive repairs after taking a severe beating by Hurricane Dennis, BP was taking an optimistic view on Wednesday. Meanwhile, other producers have nearly completed repopulating Gulf platforms and rigs, and the Minerals Management Service (MMS) has reported no other major damage to Gulf infrastructure. Gas production shut-ins have fallen to about 1 Bcf/d.
Members of the badly fractured California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) cracked heads again Tuesday during an all-day hearing on a proposed core/noncore electricity market for the state that included presentations from two-dozen industry stakeholders and academics. The public exchanges underscored the continuing sharp difference of opinion on what direction the state’s energy policy should take three years after the crisis of 2000-2001.
Burned so badly that it subsequently got out of the gas andelectric marketing business, LG&E Energy nevertheless has urgedthe Federal Energy Regulatory Commission not to interfere with theinfant electric market by imposing price caps. The marketer, whichhad been among the largest in the business, said the price run-upin June to the neighborhood of $7,000 per MWh for gas deliveredinto Cinergy was part of the “growing pains” of an immaturecommodities market.