Gulfport Energy Corp. smashed its natural gas, oil and liquids production records in 2Q2013 with total output at 815,300 boe, with the Utica Shale the outstanding contributor. A year earlier the operator produced a total of 663,300 boe.
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San Bruno Settlement Talks Break Down, PG&E CEO Says
Talks for the settlement of outstanding state regulatory cases relating to the 2010 San Bruno natural gas transmission pipeline rupture and explosion have broken down, and Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) now expects to litigate the issues at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), said PG&E Corp. CEO Tony Earley.
Blaze Energy Corp. said it has settled a dispute with Environmental Energy Services Inc. (EESV), exchanging subsidiary EESV Fayetteville Inc. and associated outstanding notes for EESV’s 76% stake in the company, in a stock deal valued at $1.9 million. Under the first phase of a reorganization plan, the Boise, ID-based company — which is not affiliated with Calgary-based Blaze Energy Ltd. — also accepted the resignations of all but one of its employees and canceled the lease for its corporate offices.
Sidewinder, Union Merger Set to Close
Houston-based land driller Sidewinder Drilling Inc. management on Monday said it now holds about 92% of the outstanding shares of Union Drilling Inc., which allows the unconventional oilfield service operators to move forward with their merger, first announced in September.
Chesapeake Energy Corp. has completed sales of its Permian Basin properties, which allows it to reduce the outstanding balance on existing term loans to $1.2 billion from $4 billion by the end of this month. The company said it plans to fully repay the term loans by the end of the year. The assets sold produced close to 21,000 b/d of liquids and 90 MMcf/d of natural gas in 2Q2012, or about 5.7% of Chesapeake’s production during the period. The multi-sales package was announced in September (see Shale Daily, Sept. 13). SWEPI LP, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell plc, bought the southern Delaware Basin assets, while the northern Delaware Basin portion was sold to Chevron U.S.A. Inc., a subsidiary of Chevron Corp. The producing assets in the Midland Basin were sold to affiliates of Houston-based EnerVest Ltd.
Forest Oil Unloads East Texas Eagle Ford Gathering for $34M
One month after announcing that it was abandoning a potential partnership strategy to help develop its Eagle Ford Shale acreage in favor of a “go-it-alone plan,” Denver-based Forest Oil Corp. said it has entered into an agreement to sell the majority of its East Texas natural gas gathering assets to a subsidiary of Tristate Midstream II LLC for proceeds of $34 million.
Two Board Members Ousted from Chesapeake
Chesapeake Energy Corp. shareholders jettisoned two board members up for reelection and approved three shareholder-initiated resolutions at the company’s annual meeting in Oklahoma City, signaling a turning point for the operator’s corporate governance and likely for the future of CEO Aubrey McClendon.
Moody’s Investor Services downgraded the credit rating of the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). BPA goes to an “Aa1” rating from “Aaa,” impacting $6.3 billion in outstanding debt. The outlook was set at “stable.” Moody’s said the downgrade reflects BPA’s increased “hydrology and market price risk,” which has eroded its credit quality during the last several years. Financial reserves available to handle increased risk have dropped by 36% during the two-year period ending with fiscal year 2010, Moody’s said. The ratings agency said it expects the challenges for BPA to continue in the form of “low natural gas prices, sustained lower demand and increasing amounts of wind generation during BPA’s peak surplus energy sales season.”
Petrohawk Takes Wing on $12.1B BHP Billiton Offer
Australia’s BHP Billiton Ltd. has offered to buy shale patch pioneer Petrohawk Energy Corp. for $12.1 billion in a deal that would more than double unit BHP Billiton Petroleum’s resource base and grow proved reserves by about 30%, it said. Petrohawk shares took flight on the news as investors also delivered uplift to a flock of the company’s peers.
Cornell Professor Challenges Shale ‘Myths’
Universities should be working to answer outstanding questions about shale development, but until they do the practice should proceed cautiously, if it proceeds at all, a Cornell University professor told students in Pittsburgh on March 18.