The Supreme Court of Ohio has agreed to hear an appeal in a case involving local ordinances, or “home rule” laws, that pits a Utica Shale driller against a Summit County municipality that had tried to shut down the driller’s operations.
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State lawmakers in West Virginia plan to meet in Wheeling on Thursday to discuss the impact the oil and gas industry is having on local roadways.
All but one of the proposals to address hydraulic fracturing (fracking), including all of those seeking moratoriums on the well stimulation practice, have bitten the dust in the California legislature. The lone bill standing (SB 4) is still awaiting committee referral in the lower house Assembly (see Shale Daily, June 3).
Despite the shale revolution in North America transforming global energy dynamics, the United States is unlikely to disengage completely from the Persian Gulf because other nations still depend on the region and it will still affect the world’s oil prices, according to a draft report presented to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. has completed its takeover of Plains Exploration & Production Co., with a total value of $16.2 billion, including $9.7 billion in debt. The transaction, completed Friday, included a payment of about $3.3 billion in cash ($25/Plains share), 91 million shares of Freeport common stock ($2.9 billion) and a special cash dividend of $3.00/share (see Daily GPI, May 21). The acquisition of related affiliate McMoRan Exploration Co. for close to $3 billion is expected to close on Monday (June 3), subject to shareholder approval. Former Plains Chairman and CEO Jim Flores was named co-vice chairman and CEO/president of subsidiary Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas LLC. Flores also is to be part of newly formed office of the chairman with Chairman Jim Bob Moffett and Vice Chairman Richard C. Adkerson, who also is CEO/president. Flores had served as chairman/CEO of Plains since its inception in 2002; he became president in 2004. Former Plains directors Alan Buckwalter and Thomas A. Fry also have joined the board. Buckwalter is the retired chair of JPMorgan Chase Bank, South Region, and Fry retired as president of the National Ocean Industries Association after serving from 2000 to 2010; he also previously directed the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.
Members of the Pittsburgh Presbytery voted to end a one-year moratorium on shale development, a decision that could potentially open property from the organization’s 150 churches to Marcellus Shale oil and gas leasing.
EQT Corp. released updated information for its investors on Friday, including higher projections for estimated ultimate recovery (EUR) at wells in its core Marcellus Shale acreage, thanks to reduced cluster spacing, longer laterals and a pending deal with Chesapeake Energy Corp.